Show download pdf controls
  • Modernising Business Registers

    The Modernising Business Registers (MBR) program delivers Australian Business Registry Services (ABRS) and director ID.

    On this page

    About the MBR program

    Keep checking this page for updates. We'll add information as the MBR program progresses.

    The MBR program aims to:

    • streamline how you register, view and maintain your business information with government
    • make it easier for businesses to meet their registration obligations – giving them more time to focus on their customers and business operations
    • improve the efficiency of registry service transactions
    • make business information more trusted and valuable.

    To do this, ABRSExternal Link was established. Managed by the ATO, we are progressively adding:

    • more than 30 Australian Securities & Investments Commission (ASIC) registers
    • Australian Business Register (ABR)
    • director ID
    • services, such as search services.

    The MBR program of work includes high-level milestones to:

    • establish the foundations for ABRS and ABRS online
    • introduce director ID
    • move existing registers and search services from ASIC and ABR to ABRS, including
      • companies (companies release)
      • business names
      • Australian business numbers (ABNs)
      • professional and historical registers
    • introduce a digital inbox for business to securely access and view correspondence and messages from us.

    To help design and implement the MBR program, we are working with several consultation groups, including the:

    What's already changed

    As the program rolls out, we'll keep you updated with changes that may affect you.

    • In 2021, the director ID requirement was introduced with a new ABRS websiteExternal Link and online service to apply for a director ID.
    • On 15 April 2021, ASIC registry staff moved to the ATO in a machinery of government (MoG) administrative change to help the Registrar. This was a staffing change only. It doesn't currently change your registry obligations, how you interact with the ASIC registers or the ABR.

    What's not changing

    The following will not change with the program:

    • Registry data will continue to only be provided to other parties, including other areas of ASIC and the ATO
      • to maintain the registers
      • if authorised by law.
    • The existing requirements for the collection, storage, integration and management of data will be upheld.

    For now, how you register, search and get extracts of the registers, and interact with the ABR and ASIC remains the same. You can still search ASIC's registersExternal Link.

    There is a clear separation between registry functions and other functions of the ATO.

    How to get a director ID

    If you're currently a director, or plan to become one in the next 12 months, you’ll need a director ID. This includes anyone who is a director of a company or other body corporate registered under the Corporations Act 2001 or the Corporations (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander) Act 2006 (CATSI Act).

    For more information, visit Link.

    Companies release

    The companies release will provide over 3 million companies with a more streamlined way to register, view and maintain company details using ABRS onlineExternal Link

    Planned for later in the program, registry information will move to ABRS online from the following ASIC registers: 

    • Australian public companies
    • Australian private companies
    • registered Australian bodies
    • foreign companies.

    Information and search services related to these 4 ASIC registers will also be available on ABRS. This includes ABN details and company search services.

    For now, we ask that you continue to keep your details with the ATO, ASIC and the ABR up to date. This will ensure that when the time comes to transition your details, they are current.

    Administering the MBR program

    On 4 April 2021, the Commissioner of Taxation was appointed as Registrar of the Australian Business Registry Services (ABRS) under the:

    • Business Names Registration Act 2011
    • Commonwealth Registers Act 2020
    • Corporations Act 2001
    • National Consumer Credit Protection Act 2009.

    The Registrar's role is to:

    • lead and implement the MBR program
    • perform statutory registry functions
    • exercise powers under the relevant laws.

    Initially, this will also include assisting ASIC to perform statutory registry functions and exercise its powers as a delegate of ASIC. At a later stage, the Registrar will assume primary responsibility for those functions under law.

    We are rolling out the MBR program in partnership with:

    • Treasury
    • Australian Securities & Investments Commission
    • Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources
    • Digital Transformation Agency.


    For supporting legislation, refer to:

      Last modified: 06 Sep 2023QC 65283