Unleashing the Potential: ASBFEO Report Reveals the Power of Australian SMEs

Unleashing the Potential: ASBFEO Report Reveals the Power of Australian SMEs

Author: Ian Aldridge, Progressive Legal

australian SMEs

Join us in celebrating World Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSME) Day, an occasion that highlights the vital role of small businesses in the Australian economy. As we commemorate this day, it’s crucial to recognise the significant contributions of MSMEs and the need for increased support to fuel their growth.

In a report released by the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman (ASBFEO), insightful data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics and the Australian Taxation Office sheds light on the SME sector’s impact in the year 2021-22.

The Backbone of Australia’s Economy

It’s easy to overlook the fact that MSMEs are the backbone and lifeblood of the Australian economy. These enterprises not only help themselves but also contribute to the well-being of others.

Astonishingly, MSMEs account for one-third of Australia’s GDP, amounting to over half a trillion dollars. This remarkable figure emphasises the importance of nurturing and supporting these businesses for the collective future of our nation.

Key Takeaways

  1. A Vast Majority: Nearly 98% of businesses in Australia fall under the small business category, highlighting the significance of this sector.
  2. Job Creation: MSMEs provide employment opportunities to approximately 5.1 million individuals across the country. On average, Australia’s 2.5 million SMEs offer more than two jobs each, demonstrating their substantial role in combating unemployment.
  3. Growing Gender Diversity: The number of women business owners has witnessed a remarkable increase. Women now account for 35% of business ownership, with their rate of entrepreneurship growing three times faster than that of men since 2006.

Challenges Faced by Small Businesses

Despite their invaluable contributions, small businesses encounter various challenges that hinder their growth and discourage potential entrepreneurs from starting their own ventures. It is essential to address these obstacles to foster a more conducive environment for the next generation of entrepreneurs. Noteworthy challenges include:

  1. Financial Struggles: Many SMEs face financial constraints, making it difficult for them to expand their businesses. Offering additional incentives, financial assistance, and tax breaks can empower these enterprises to hire more employees and make greater contributions to the nation’s economy.
  2. Risk and Reward Imbalance: Entrepreneurs often face a dilemma due to the higher risk associated with starting a business. The disparity between effort invested and financial rewards received can dissuade individuals from pursuing their entrepreneurial aspirations. Creating a fairer and more rewarding environment can motivate potential business owners to take the leap.
  3. Youth Engagement: Encouraging younger Australians to embrace entrepreneurship is vital for sustaining a vibrant small business ecosystem. Efforts should be made to understand why owning a small business might not be as appealing to the younger generation and to develop strategies to make it more enticing.


On this World MSME Day, let’s celebrate and honor the invaluable contributions of micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises in Australia. Recognising their significance, we must prioritise providing the necessary support and resources to help them thrive.

By offering incentives, financial assistance, and cultivating an environment conducive to entrepreneurial growth, we can secure a prosperous future for both small businesses and our collective economy. Let us come together to empower the next generation of entrepreneurs and pave the way for a thriving small business landscape in Australia.

At Progressive Legal, we are passionate about helping SMEs and understand the importance of supporting their legal needs. If you’re a business owner and need legal assistance please do not hesitate to contact us on 1800 820 083 or fill out the contact form on this page.

*NB// The contents of this article are information only and should not be relied on as legal advice. Please seek specialist legal advice in relation to your particular situation.

(c) Progressive Legal Pty Ltd – All legal rights reserved (2023)

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