Counts of Australian Businesses, including Entries and Exits

Latest release

Counts of actively trading businesses, rates of entry to and exit from the market sector of the economy, and rates of business survival

Reference period
July 2019 - June 2023

Key statistics

At 30 June 2023 there were 2,589,873 actively trading businesses in the Australian economy.

In 2022-23 there was a: 

  • 2.0% or 50,149 increase in the number of businesses
  • 16.0% entry rate, with 406,365 entries
  • 14.0% exit rate, with 356,216 exits

Entries and exits

The number of actively trading businesses in this release differs from the total number of entities with an Australian Business Number (ABN).

A table of the conceptual and practical basis of counts is published in the Methodology publication detailing how these counts differ.


In 2022-23 the three industries with the largest percentage increase in businesses were:

  • Health Care and Social Assistance (increase of 6.7% to 185,260 businesses)
  • Transport, Postal and Warehousing (increase of 4.2% to 218,662 businesses)
  • Electricity, Gas, Water and Waste Services (increase of 2.9% to 8,582 businesses)

The industries with the largest percentage decrease in businesses in 2022-23 were:

  • Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing (decrease of 0.4% to 174,471 businesses)
  • Accommodation and Food Services (decrease of 0.2% to 110,175 businesses)

States and territories

In 2022-23 there was a:

  • 16,385 increase in the number of businesses in New South Wales, the largest net increase in any state/territory
  • 14,662 increase in the number of businesses in Queensland
  • 1,311 increase in Australian Capital Territory, with the largest percentage increase at 3.9%

All states and territories showed a growth in business counts.

Institutional sector

In 2022-23 there was a:

  • 5.1% (4,659) increase in financial corporations to a total of 96,082 businesses
  • 3.3% (35,104) increase in non-financial corporations to a total of 1,109,777 businesses
  • 0.8% (10,378) increase in households to a total of 1,381,741 businesses

Households accounted for 53.4% of all businesses, the largest of any institutional sector.

Type of legal organisation

In 2022-23 total companies showed the largest net growth among types of legal organisations, showing a 4.0% (42,246) increase in 1,094,465 businesses in total, with 137,164 entries.

There was also a:

  • 3.8% (8,790) decrease in partnerships to 223,048 total
  • 2.2% (16,711) increase in sole proprietors to 784,744 total

Employment size

In 2022-23 the number of non-employing businesses increased by 4.2% (64,265), with a net movement of 35,509 surviving businesses from employing to non-employing.

There was also a:

  • 8.8% (5,221) increase in businesses with 20-199 employees to 64,559 total
  • 8.0% (362) increase in businesses with 200+ employees to 4,895 total
  • 3.3% (23,990) decrease in businesses with 1-4 employees to 703,467 total

Turnover size

In 2022-23:

  • 91.9% of businesses had turnover of less than $2 million
  • 24.7% of businesses had turnover of less than $50,000
  • Businesses with turnover of $2m or more increased by 9.9% (18,876 businesses)
  • There was a large net movement of surviving businesses into the upper turnover size ranges, with surviving businesses having a turnover at or above $200,000, increasing by 53,271
  • The $10 million or more turnover size range showed the largest percentage change, increasing by 12.1%, driven largely by the movement of 7,017 businesses out of the $5m to less than $10m turnover size range

Interactive map

Interactive map - Count of Australian businesses including entries and exits, July 2019 ­– June 2023

How to use
  • Use the headings under the main title to navigate to a topic and then use the buttons on the left to view different subsets of the data. 
  • If viewing on a mobile device or small screen the buttons to switch between data subsets may move to below the map. 
  • Click on a region of interest to view data about that region.
  • To search, click on the magnifying glass to open the search function. You can search for addresses, suburbs, and postcodes. 
Geographic areas

The boundaries used in the interactive map are:

  • Statistical Area Level 2 (SA2) 2021, ASGS Edition 3 Main Structure boundaries according to the Australian Statistical Geography Standard (ASGS) Edition 3
  • Local Government Area (LGA) 2021, ASGS Edition 3 Non-ABS Structures boundaries according to the Australian Statistical Geography Standard (ASGS): July 2023
Map data

The data displayed in the interactive map can be accessed from the Data downloads section below.

Quarterly experimental counts

In the March quarter 2024 there was a:

  • 1.0%, or 26,017 increase in the number of businesses
  • 4.2% entry rate, with 110,368 entries
  • 3.2% exit rate, with 84,351 exits
  • 1.6% (25,143) increase in non-employing businesses and 0.1% (874) increase in employing businesses

For more information on the methodological differences between the quarterly and annual counts, see the Technical note.

Industry subdivision

In the March quarter 2024, the subdivisions with the largest quarterly net increase in businesses were:

  • Transport Support Services (2,667 businesses or 4.0%)
  • Medical and Other Health Care Services (2,651 businesses or 1.7%)

The subdivisions with the largest quarterly net decrease in businesses were:

  • Agriculture (151 businesses or 0.1%)
  • Grocery, Liquor and Tobacco Product Wholesaling (88 businesses or 0.7%)
  • Other Goods Wholesaling (67 businesses or 0.4%)

Seasonally adjusted data

There is a strong seasonal pattern in the counts of Total Businesses, Business Entries and Business Exits. To assist in distinguishing between short-term trends and the seasonal patterns, seasonally adjusted counts have been prepared for these headline figures. For more information, see the Methodology.

In the March 2024 quarter, in seasonally adjusted terms, there was a:

  • 0.8%, or 21,755, increase in the number of businesses
  • 4.6% entry rate, with 123,352 entries
  • 3.8% exit rate, with 100,164 exits
Count of businesses, entries and exits, December 2023 and March 2024, Australia
Dec-23Change (%)Mar-24Change (%)
Total Businesses2,611,100-0.22,637,1171
Business Entries131,2805110,3684.2
Business Exits137,8465.384,3513.2
Seasonally Adjusted
Total Businesses2,624,4960.92,646,2510.8
Business Entries131,0375123,3524.7
Business Exits104,6724100,1643.8

Trend estimates are not calculated for these series as they require the irregular component to be accounted for and this cannot be accurately estimated.

Data downloads

Annual data cubes

Data cube 1 tables 1-16 are released in August.

Data cube 1 tables 17-20 and data cubes 2-11 are released in December.

Data files

Quarterly data cubes

Quarterly and seasonally adjusted data is released in February, May, August and December.

Data files

Revision of 2021-22 data

Unusual reporting of some units during the COVID-19 pandemic and impacts of the ATO-led Operation Protego led the ABS to conclude that a number of units did not engage in any meaningful economic activity as per ABS definition of a business for the purpose of the CABEE publication in the 2021-22 reference year. 

The total counts of businesses for the 2021-22 financial year have been revised in the relevant data cubes and will not align if compared to a previous release.

Please refer to the Technical Note in the Methodology for further information.

Post-release changes

07 May 2024 - March quarterly data are also being released today.

13 February 2024 - December 2023 quarterly data are being released today.

19 December 2023 - Datacube 9 was re-released to correct an error. This error was exclusive to this datacube. No other datacubes have been affected.

18 December 2023 - Datacubes 2-11 and tables 17-20 in datacube 1 as well as September 2023 quarterly data are being released today.



All actively trading businesses in the Australian market sector


  • Reserve Bank of Australia
  • General Government
  • Non-Profit Institutions Serving Households


Data available for:

  • Australia
  • States and Territories
  • Statistical Area Level 2 (SA2)
  • Local Government Area (LGA)


Australian Bureau of Statistics Business Register (ABSBR)

Collection method

Administrative data collected quarterly or annually for Australian Business Number (ABN) registrations recorded in the Australian Business Register (ABR), and business data from the Australian Tax Office (ATO)

History of changes

Since the 2020-21 release, ANZSIC class 6330 (superannuation funds) has been removed from scope

Full history of changes

View full methodology
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