What is the difference between an ABN and ACN?

Hannah Murray

Hannah Murray

Every business in Australia is required to have an Australian Business Number (ABN), but not every business is required to have an Australian Company Number (ACN).

ABNs and ACNs are unique numbers used to identify a business, however only businesses registered as companies require an ACN.

An ABN is an 11-digit number used by the Australian Taxation Office to monitor your business’ activity and taxes. ABNs are provided to all business regardless of whether they are a sole trader, partnership, company, or another type of organisation.

ABNs allow your business to be easily identified to other business during invoicing processes. Additionally, if your business registers for GST and payroll tax, you will need to have an ABN.

An ACN is a 9-digit number used and issued by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) to monitor your company’s activities. ACNs highlight your business’ structure and allow others to search for further details about the company including directors, shareholders, capital structure and sometimes financial reports.




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