Contact us for help in setting up your free watchlister trial. Once registered you can start using your free watchlister account straight away – just add the ABN of an entity you would like to watchlist and you’re ready to go.

You will have immediate access to a timeline of risk history and will also be alerted when events impacting the ABN you are watching are identified. You will be alerted via email for all events and via SMS and email for critical events. The events will also appear in your dashboard.

Your free trial allows you to watchlist one (1) Entity/ABN at any time. You may upgrade your subscription at any time, however once you upgrade your plan the ABN on your free watchlister trial will count toward the number of entities your are allowed to monitor on that plan.

No.  The watchlister service is designed only to watch businesses that have applied for and received an ABN. An individual with an ABN – a sole trader – can be added to your watchlist as this is a legitimate business entity. Only publicly available information on sole traders carrying on a business is sought and monitored by watchlister.

There are legal and privacy issues that determine what information can be sourced and used in relation to individuals. Watchlister does not monitor risk events – including credit defaults – for individuals.

We can fully customise the watchlister dashboard for any organistion that wishes to watchlist 500 or more ABNs.  Features and capability we can provide include:

  • Unlimited users
  • Court judgments
  • API integration
  • Custom reporting
  • Custom dashboard with logo
  • Upload of large data sets
  • Data and database cleansing
  • Fully outsourced monitoring service

We provide a range of related risk advisory, financial viability and professional services to our custom clients. Call us today for a chat about how we can tailor a solution to fit your business needs.

Unless you have a custom account, you are not able to share your watchlist with others. A custom account allows multiple users access to several watchlists. Call us today for a chat about how we can set up multiple users on your plan.

Additional features and capability will be continually added to your watchlister dashboard. New watchlists, ASIC searches, live court judgements, tribunal hearings and other risk events are coming soon.

In order to access the services provided on this website, you must become a registered user and agree to our Terms & Conditions. You may only use watchlister in accordance with these terms and conditions.

The information available through watchlister is subject to our Privacy Policy. These guidelines reference the Privacy Act 1988 and the National Privacy Principals.

Watchlister is not a credit bureau and does not provide credit risk ratings.  For corporate credit risk ratings and complex financial viability assessments, you should seek the services of a professional. Contact us for a free quote and evaluation of your business needs.

Adding an entity to your watchlist is easy. Simply type in the ABN or search by business name for the entity you wish to watchlist. Select the correct entity and add to your watchlist using your dashboard.

You will receive a notification once you reach the ABN limit on your plan.

Don’t worry, if you don’t have an ABN or have an incorrect ABN you can still search for and watchlist a business. Search for a business name and the watchlister search function will provide you with a list of options to choose from.

If two identical names appear that match the entity you are interested in watching, you may need to contact the business to determine the correct entity to watch.  You can also check any contract, invoice, business website or other documentation to try and find the exact, correct ABN for the entity you wish to watch.

Alternatively, it may be best to watchlist all known related entities if they are under the control of the same person or the same entity.

The main reasons this could occur are:

  1. The company or business chooses not to apply for an ABN.  This has GST and other tax consequences (see below);
  2. The company or business is not eligible to receive an ABN;
  3. The ABN has been applied for, but is not yet issued by the Australian Business Registry (ABR):
  4. The business has cancelled the ABN, usually because they are no longer trading;
  5. The business has restructured and so they have cancelled the previous ABN and applied for a new one; and/or
  6. The ABR has cancelled the ABN

You may have the Australian Company Number (ACN) or the Australian Registered Body Numbers (ARBN) of an organisation you wish to watchlist.  These are 9 digit numbers issued by the Australian Securities & Investments Commission (ASIC) when it registers a company under the Corporations law. A company must apply separately to the ABR for an ABN.  Not every company is required to apply for an ABN and can trade using its name and ACN/ARBN. Also, not every company is eligible for an ABN if they do not meet the criteria of the ABR.

Businesses need an ABN to operate in the GST system, including claiming GST credits, and to avoid having amounts withheld from payments to them.  Business clients must withhold 46.5% of any payments they make to a business that does not quote an ABN, meaning most businesses apply for an ABN to avoid this cash flow impact. However, not all businesses apply for an ABN.

If a business is no longer entitled to an ABN it is their responsibility to cancel it. The Government agency responsible for issuing ABNs regularly reviews ABNs to ensure that they are held by businesses or organisations that are entitled to have an ABN and are carrying on an enterprise. If the ABR has evidence that a business may no longer be entitled to an ABN it may be cancelled. This can include information that indicates an ABN holder is not carrying on an enterprise as they have failed to lodge business activity statements (BAS), and/or not declared income at the business labels on their income tax returns.

It is very unusual for a business that is trading in Australia not to have an ABN.  However, there may be a reasonable and valid reason for a business your dealing with not to have an ABN.  At present, you cannot add a company, sole trader, partnership, trust or any other type of business to your watchlist that does not have an ABN.

Your watchlister dashboard is a powerful risk management tool. You can track, group and search entities you are watching with the following tools:

1. Colour Codes

Use the “Manage Watch” tool for your selected entity to add a colour code to any entity. Your watchlist can now be filtered by any colour.

2. Sort

You can sort each column (ABN, Entity Name, Reference and Account) simply by clicking on the right hand side (^) of each column header.

3. Search

We have built a full search capability for your watchlist. You can search by name, ABN, reference and account.

4. Account and Reference Numbers

You can create your own account and reference numbers and apply these to any ABN.  You can then search, export and sort using account and reference numbers.

5. Export

You can export your watchlist to a CSV file for manipulation, filtering and reporting using Excel or any other spreadsheet of your choice. Using the export function, you can integrate your watchlist with your existing systems.  We also offer an API for our custom clients.

You can contact us and we will upload large amounts of ABNs for you.  Simply email us at, quoting your user name, and we will assist you with this.

An ABN with a status of ‘active’ means that the registration is current. An ABN with a status of ‘cancelled’ means that the ABN has been deactivated and is no longer current.

No. We use the ABN Lookup system that publishes the public information provided by a business when it registers for an ABN. The public information gives the postcode and state/territory in which the business is located, but does not include the address, email, telephone or other contact details. You can obtain detailed contact details for a company by performing an ASIC search on the company and/or its directors.

The search results currently return the top 10 closest matches to the name you were looking for.  Try searching by the ABN to return more accurate results.

From 1 July 2012, most insolvency and other notices will no longer be required to be advertised in the print media but will be lodged with ASIC for publication by ASIC.  The types of notices that MUST be lodged by solicitors, accountants, members of companies and insolvency practitioners for publication by ASIC are:

1. Notices of winding up applications
2. Notices relating to appointments
3. Notices of meetings of creditors
4. Notices of intention to disclaim property
5. Notices calling for proofs of debt and intention to declare dividends
6. Notices of meetings for schemes of arrangement (although the option to publish in print will remain)
7. Company deregistration (ASIC publishes these notices)

If a solicitor, accountant, member of a company and/or an insolvency practitioner fails to lodge these notices for publication by ASIC, they may not appear as an alert.

No. You must change your details directly with the relevant government agency.

When you watchlist an entity, a history of events appears.  All ‘Information’ and ‘Important’ events that occurred before you watchlisted your entity are automatically marked as “Read”, but can be marked “Unread” if you choose.

All historical, high risk events are automatically marked “Unread” to ensure these are highlighted and promptly brought to your attention. This can also assist with any data clean up.

All new alerts are marked “Unread” and can be easily identified. Each entity with unread alerts will have a red exclamation mark (!) next to them on your dashboard.

Yes.  We provide free onsite training to any organisation on our Enterprise and Custom plans.  Please contact us to arrange a visit by our friendly and helpful team.  

For all paid subscribers, we offer unlimited questions that can be submitted via email, and you can also call us on 1300 855 311 with any specific questions you may have.

Yes, you can upgrade your plan at any time. Simply log in to your account and select the new plan you wish to use.

Yes, all packages (except Custom customers) may cancel their subscription at any time. There are no lock-in contracts.

All subscriptions are billed monthly. Your billing cycle commences on the day you successfully register your account. If you cancel a watchlist subscription mid-way through your billing cycle you will be charged for the full month. If you cancel you watchlister account or subscription, your account will expire on the last day of your billing cycle.

Yes, you can easily change your personal and billing details. Log into your account and click ‘Account’ in the top right corner of your dashboard under your user name.  Click the blue ‘Edit Account’ button and update your information.

You don’t need to provide credit card details to register for your free watchlister trial.

To register for the Basic, Pro or Enterprise plans you will need to supply your credit card details. If you require a Custom account, please call one of our friendly team to help you get started.

Phone         1300 855 311      (9AM to 5PM Australian Eastern Standard Time)




Yes.  You can call us on 1300 855 311 and ask to speak to client support.  You can also email us at

If you are an Enterprise or Custom client, we can conduct onsite training for 1 or all of your staff members.

If you have a large number of ABNs that you wish to upload, we can also assist you with this.

Our telephone is answered from 9AM to 5PM Australian Eastern Standard Time.  You can submit any query via email at any time and we will get back to you as soon as we can.

We have risk rated events using our own experience and assumptions of their potential impact on a typical user.  It is important that you interpret these events in accordance with your own unique circumstances.  Some events we have rated  ’Important’ and ‘Information’ may have serious and critical consequences to your individual circumstances and therefore need to be assessed using your own criteria. Risk rated events are currently ranked under 3 key categories: (1) Critical; (2) Important; and (3) Information.

1. Critical 

  • Changes of ABN status from Active to Inactive
  • Application to wind up a company
  • Appointment of administrator and/or liquidator
  • Any notice published by ASIC relating to external administration and company deregistration

 2. Important 

  • Change of ABN status from Cancelled to Active
  • Change of main business location
  • Change to GST registration status

3. Information 

  • Change of Entity name
  • Business name added to Entity name

If you are a custom client, we can develop specific criteria tailored to your circumstances. Please contact us to discuss.

Once you are watchlisting an entity, more than one risk event can occur on any given day for an entity.  In this case, you will receive multiple alerts for the same entity. These alerts will each be for a separate event that has occurred.

When you watchlist a new business, you will receive SMS and email alerts for all critical alerts that have occurred in the past. There may be more than one critical event that has occurred in the past that you will be alerted to, however these historic events will only be sent to you via SMS or email once. We chose to do this so no critical event will go unnoticed, particularly for clients uploading many ABNs for the first time.

There are two types of alerts that you will receive: (1) Historic Alerts; and (2) Current Alerts.

1. Historic Alerts

When you watchlist a new business, you will receive alerts for all events that have occurred in the past. Except for ‘Critical’ events, these will all be marked ‘Read’. You can see the last 5 historic events by clicking on the entity you are interested in. To see all events related to the entity you are watching, click “View More Events”.

We find that it is useful to review historic alerts. Firstly, historic alerts may identify events you already know about, or may alert you to something new has an impact.  Secondly, a review of these events is often useful to check the accuracy of your existing records and databases.  Finally, a review of historic events can be a quick check that what you have been told by a client, customer or new entity you are dealing with seems accurate, consistent and legitimate.

2. Current Alerts

Current alerts identify events as they occur and are therefore a ‘real-time’ indicator of possible risk.  The nature of the alert and your own assessment of the importance of the event to your relationship with the entity will obviously determine how you respond.

We have enabled the system to mark events ‘Read’ and ‘Unread’ as a means of managing the alerts. We have also implemented colour coding of entities that can enable you to highlight, say, all high risk entities as ‘red’.  All ‘red’ entities can be quickly and easily sorted from the other entities on your watchlist.

For a full understanding of the nature of the alert, we recommend that each alert is viewed back to the primary source by clicking through to the relevant Government web-site. This can be done on the event alert itself on your dashboard.  The three sources can be found by clicking:

  1. View insolvency notice at ASIC
  2. ABR Details
  3. ABR History


You can delete the entity from watchlister to stop receiving alerts.  If you are receiving SMS alerts and no longer wish to be alterted in this manner, please contact our help team and we can assist you.

Start watchlisting now!