Introduction to the New ASIC Business Names Register

Rosy Sullivan


Any person or entity who conducts a business in Australia must have a registered business name. As of 28 May 2012, ASIC introduced a new national business names register, replacing previous state and territory services.

Business names are made available on a public register so that people can identify the individuals, companies or other organisations that operate under that name. The only exemptions to this requirement to register your business name are where you trade under:

  • your own individual name, or

  • all of the individual names of the partners in a partnership; or

  • a company or registered body name.

If you already have an existing business name registered under a state or territory authority then not to worry, it will be automatically transferred across to the new ASIC register. ASIC will contact you when your business name needs to be renewed and assist you through the process.

If you wish to register a new business name, the process can be done online at ‘ASIC Connect’ []. You will need an ABN or an ABN application reference number to get started. You can check the availability of your intended business name on the ASIC site.  Also, it is important to check that your business name doesn’t infringe any registered trademarks. This can be checked online at IP Australia.