Small business represents around 97 per cent of all businesses in Western Australia. They operate across a wide range of industries including manufacturing, business services, retail and transport.
According to the latest ABS Counts of Australian Businesses, as at June 2016 there were 2,171,607 small businesses nationwide, with 218,152 in WA.
Non-employing businesses at 140,054 continues to be the largest group of all WA businesses (62 per cent of all businesses).
WA businesses by number employed
|Business size||% of all businesses in WA||Number of businesses at June 2016||% change from 2015||Number of businesses at June 2015||Number of businesses at June 2014||Number of businesses at June 2013|
As at June 2016 industries with the largest number of small businesses in WA were:
- Construction - 41,502 small businesses (19% of all small business in WA)
- Professional Scientific and Technical services - 25,917 (11.9%)
- Rental, Hiring and Real Estate Services - 23,827 (10.9%)
- Financial and Insurance Services - 20,190 (9.3%)
- Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing - 16,600 (7.6%)
Small businesses as a percentage of all businesses – by industry
|Industry||% that are small businesses|
|Accommodation and Food Services||88%|
|Administrative and Support Services||94%|
|Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing||98%|
|Arts and Recreation Services||96%|
|Education and Training||93%|
|Electricity, Gas, Water and Waste Services||91%|
|Financial and Insurance Services||99%|
|Health Care and Social Assistance||97%|
|Information Media and Telecommunications||97%|
|Professional, Scientific and Technical Services||98%|
|Public Administration and Safety||90%|
|Rental, Hiring and Real Estate Services||99%|
|Transport, Postal and Warehousing||98%|
The ABS also reports on the survival rate of businesses, focussing on two types of business survival; the rate of those businesses that entered in the 2013-14 financial year, and the survival rates for businesses that were already operating as at June 2012.
|Business size (by number of employees)||Number of businesses that started in 2013-14||Number of businesses that started in 2013-14||Survival rate|
|Business size (by number of employees)||Number of businesses already operating in June 2012||Number of businesses that survived to June 2016||Survival rate|
Notes on statistics
- The SBDC uses the standard Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) definition of small business, which is any non-employing business or a business employing fewer than 20 people.
- These statistics are provided by the ABS. As with any analysis based on data sets it is subject to a degree of error. Individual numbers or percentages should not be used as absolutes.