Sole traders lead the way in creating new Aussie businesses

sole traders
Closeup on businessman holding a card with text SOLE TRADER business concept image with soft focus background and vintage tone

New research reveals the resilience of the Australian entrepreneurial spirit has shone through despite the tough economic climate. According to the Xero Boss Insights 2021 report, 47,000 net new businesses were added to the Australian economy in the year to 30 June 2020, bringing the number of small business in the country to 2.4 million. Of this total, 1.5 million are sole traders.

The report, gathered data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) data from 2020 to 2021, indicates that new sole trader businesses opted for central business districts (CBDs) and the edges of major cities as the preferred locations for their operations. The industries in which the self-employed flourished are diverse such as transport, professional services, construction and healthcare.

Trent Innes, Managing Director Australia and Asia, Xero, said the report highlighted the importance of sole traders in generating new businesses and how it contributed to the perseverance of the Australian small-business community over the past year.

“Despite the challenges that 2020 brought, Xero’s Boss Insights 2021 report shows Australia has yet again proven to be an overwhelmingly resilient nation,” Innes said.

“And, while many businesses had no choice but to adapt during lockdowns, a host of newly self-employed Aussies were prompted to take the leap and bring their business ownership dreams to life,” Innes added. “While the ripple effects will still be felt for some time, it takes more than a pandemic to dampen our entrepreneurial spirit.”

Bernard Salt, demographer and Boss Insights report author, said Australian entrepreneurs have responded to the pandemic with resilience and agility.

“Some small-business owners appear to have scaled back operations to sole trader status, perhaps to wait out the pandemic before springing back into life,” Salt said. “In some ways the report showcases the irrepressible optimism and determination of Australia’s small-business sector, and especially of sole traders.”