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Amazon Australia’s Pioneer Sellers

Ever thought about selling on Amazon? While it may seem a daunting prospect, MP+ is starting to see success stories come through from clients who have made the leap. We’ve thoroughly enjoyed working with these clients in setting up their business structures, and planning their tax strategies to make the most of their new ventures – even within the complex US tax system.

Here’s a look at two of MP’s clients, who have taken Amazon Australia by storm…

An Amazon success story

Nat Dwyer and John Kelly can credit a job redundancy for giving them the push they needed to launch their successful online travel products business; and becoming part of the first group of sellers on Amazon Australia. Nat’s busy career in media and John’s project management consultancy job in the oil and gas industry meant that they both felt a need for better work-life balance for their family.

When John was made redundant from his job in the oil and gas industry in 2016, they decided to take the first steps towards building their own online business. With over 100 million prime members in the United States alone and with sales of US $178 billion in 2018 Amazon provided the perfect platform for their business and lifestyle goals.

As luck would have it, a friend of a friend of Nat’s ran a successful business on Amazon via a program – Fulfilled By Amazon (FBA) – which then pointed to a pathway for her own online business selling travel products. FBA enabled sellers to create their own private label products, get them manufactured under their own brand and ship them directly to the United States, where Amazon stored the product and handled all customer service and payments.

Following take up of this, which was preceded by many months of research and some online study, Nat and John got their first product up within six months and achieved US$80,000 within the first year. The new venture achieved such healthy sales within their first six months of trading on Amazon US that they were invited to sell on Amazon Australia in December 2017.

The Amazon experience and lessons learned

It’s worth noting, though, by Nat’s own admission, that this is not a get rich quick scheme as some people may have you think. Challenges they’ve faced include failed product inspections which meant completely having to remake the product; customs delays; hijacked listings by counterfeit sellers; suspended listings; and plenty more. But it can be done.

In overcoming these hiccups, Nat and John learned some valuable lessons which have paved the way for greater success. Sales for December 2018 on Amazon Australia increased on the previous year by over 1200 per cent. And, through their consulting business ZonLister, they were now sharing the lessons learned and coaching others to overcome similar obstacles and thrive.

Nat’s words of wisdom include: “It’s important to surround yourself with the right people and right information. It’s been so great to be able to pass on the lessons we have learned, and continue to learn, to help other Western Australians flourish in this space.”

The MP+ Difference

Along with challenges specific to online trading, obtaining specialised business, accounting and taxation expertise – which included knowledge of the United States taxation system – was vital for success. At MP+, we also work with clients to carefully identify their future goals so the most optimum business structure can be devised from the outset. A business structure should always be established with a framework which facilitates asset protection, tax minimisation and accommodates future growth.

Another consideration is making sure that the chosen structure will enable access to the best concessions for capital gains tax if and when the time comes to sell the business. And if needed, through our membership with MSI Global Alliance – a worldwide network of lawyers and accountants – we can source the most suitable advice available for a client’s needs no matter where they are trading in the world.

For more information on how we can help you set up your own Amazon business, click here:

written by:

Ben’s career began in April 2008 specialising in taxation and business advisory by managing a small portfolio at a young age. He joined McKinley Plowman in 2014 as a Senior Accountant and with his passion for business and assisting clients in achieving their objectives he has progressed to a Business Services Manager, and more recently being appointed as an Associate Director.

As a qualified Certified Practising Accountant, his areas of expertise include but are not limited to, assisting clients with new business start-ups, advising on business structures, tax planning, business valuations and management reporting across many industries.

Ben prides himself on being part of his client’s business journey in taking them from where they are now and working towards where they want to be.

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