This report provides information about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander corporations registered under the CATSI Act.
Data interpretation and limitations
When interpreting the data in this report readers should be aware of the following:
- The data has been supplied by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander corporations in audited financial statements and general reports lodged with the Registrar of Indigenous Corporations (the Registrar). It is as at 16 May 2017. The accuracy of the data relies on the quality of the information lodged.
- The geographic location of a given corporation is determined by the address of its registered office. It is important to note that a corporation may be registered in one state or territory, yet provide services to a client base spread across more than one state or territory.
- While many corporations operate in more than one sector, income in this report relates to the overall activities of the corporations and cannot be broken down by sector.
- At the time of analysis, a very small number of corporations had not provided their financial information for one or more financial years in the period covered by this report. For the 2015–16 reporting period, 96.5 per cent of all corporations were compliant with their reporting obligations under the Corporations (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander) Act 2006 (CATSI Act) as at 30 June 2017. To a limited extent, gaps in the data have affected the rankings, new entries and departures, and aggregate figures presented in this report, such as growth in income and assets.
- The term ‘departures’ applies to corporations that were ranked in the top 500 for 2014–15 but not for 2015–16.
- All references to the previous financial year data are sourced from The top 500 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander corporations 2014–15.
- Revised information from subsequent or updated reports lodged by corporations for previous financial years is not reflected in these statistics.
The CATSI Act
The CATSI Act establishes the position of Registrar of Indigenous Corporations and allows Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander groups to form corporations. The CATSI Act delivers modern corporate governance standards—it emphasises the importance of compliance and reporting as a mechanism to improve transparency and accountability. The CATSI Act provides a legislative mechanism to help Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people build strong corporations, strong people and strong communities.
Corporations registered under the CATSI Act must be owned and controlled by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people: the majority of directors and the majority of members must be Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander people (sections 29-5 and 246-5).
The Registrar is an independent statutory office holder appointed by the minister responsible for Indigenous affairs. The role of the Registrar is to administer the CATSI Act. The Office of the Registrar of Indigenous Corporations (ORIC) supports the Registrar to regulate and deliver services to corporations registered under the CATSI Act.
Profile of corporations registered under the CATSI Act
Table 1: Number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander corporations registered under the CATSI Act
|Year||Registered corporations*||New registrations|
|* The number of registered corporations is as at 30 June 2016.|
|** A program conducted by the Registrar to deregister defunct corporations accounts for the reduction in the number of registered corporations in 2009–10.|
A total of 2781 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander corporations were registered under the CATSI Act as at 30 June 2016.
There were 177 new registrations during 2015–16, up from 170 in 2014–15 (table 1). Of these, 25 were transfers of existing entities from other incorporation legislation.
Under the CATSI Act all corporations are required to submit one or more reports to the Registrar depending on their size (small, medium or large) and income.
Figure 1: Reporting compliance for all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander corporations, 2005–06 to 2015–16
Figure 1 shows the last decade of reporting compliance rates. Corporations have sustained a rate of compliance of above 95 per cent for the past seven years.