Do I need to have an ABN to register a Pty Ltd company?
(By Brendan Muller, Operations Manager of and, October 2014)

The answer is no.

You donít need to have an ABN (Australian Business Number) to register any Australian company, including the (by far) most common type - a Pty Ltd company.

In fact, even if you do have an ABN (for example as a sole trader or a partnership looking now to register a company) itís of no use or advantage when registering a company because the application process doesnít even ask for it*.

If anything, itís the other way around.

That is, once you register your company (upon which the company will automatically be issued with a 9 digit ACN - Australian Company Number), your company can then apply for and get an ABN (the ABN will be 11 digits long, the last 9 digits of which will be the same as the companyís ACN).

[* Very occasionally, however, there is a necessity within an application to register a company (as opposed to a prerequisite for an application to register a company) to supply an ABN. If one of the shareholders of a proposed company is the holder of a business name and the company thatís being registered is to have that exact same name, or a name that is deemed to be identical to it (& the business name was registered after 28 May 2012), then the ABN of the entity that holds the business name (whether that be a sole trader, partnership or whatever) will have to be supplied.]