If you’re wondering how to register a business or trading name, this may help point you in the right direction.

Australia’s national business names register is managed and maintained by the Australian Securities Investment Commission (ASIC).

For the uninitiated, negotiating ASIC online will test the best of your online skills. There are two steps:

  • Firstly, you have to negotiate through ASIC’s Home page.
  • Secondly, you must negotiate ASIC’s online platform – the one government platform that strikes fear into my heart – ASIC Connect.

But first some background

A number of years ago each state independently managed and maintained its own Business Names Register. This system made it difficult for business operators to register and administer the same business name in multiple jurisdictions and caused conflict with Pty Ltd company names administered by ASIC, which is a national register.

State administrators were mostly paper form driven

Annual renewals were delivered through the mail system. For instance; If you needed to register, cancel or transfer the business name due to the sale of a business or business restructure, you simply called the relevant state authority or downloaded a blank form.
The completed and executed form was then posted off and duly processed. Simple enough.

Prior to 2012 ASIC collected these trading names in a register that was searchable via ASIC’s online platform.

In 2012 the national business names register under ASIC management, replaced the various state-based systems and ASIC connect was launched.

ASIC Connect is now the platform for registering and maintaining a business name.

Requirements – How to register a business or trading name

  1. An available name
  2. An ABN
  3. Personal or entity details
  4. Lots of patience

A further complication for the national business names register arose from the Australia Business Register (ABR).

The ABR maintains a register of Australian Business Numbers (ABN’s).

Included on that public ABN register was the entity’s “Trading Name” – both registered and non-registered.

From 1 November 2018 business names are no longer included on the ABR.

 Companies Direct Online are here to help, we’re happy to do it all for you. Reach out and ask us questions


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