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Restaurant Business Loans
Guides and resources for restaurant business loans

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Restaurant small businesses

Australia has access to a remarkable range of varieties of cuisine, particular when you consider its relative isolation from the rest of the globe. But thanks to a vibrant variety of immigration – particularly since the 1970s – there has been an explosion of flavours that has contributed to Australia’s vibrant restaurant scene.

Interestingly, Australians also seem to have a preference for authenticity and unique dining experiences. Fast food aside, chains tend to have had a mixed response from Australian consumers; there have been numerous notable closures within recent years, and no one player controls more than 5% of the market. This presents prospective restaurateurs – or current ones who are looking to try something new – with a striking opportunity to make their mark on the restaurant business.

While COVID-19 has had an impact on hospitality businesses in general, it seems likely that the industry will make a swift recovery as the pandemic continues to subside in Australia. Restaurants who are opening or reassessing may be well-placed to take advantage of these new dining environments.

If you’re an aspiring restaurateur or an existing one who’s looking to try something new, the time might be right for you. Talk to OnDeck to find out how we can help with finance.

Restaurant Small Businesses in Australia – the Statistics

The current market size of the restaurant industry in Australia is $18 billion per annum [i]


There are currently more than 21,600 registered businesses in the restaurant industry in Australia[iv]


More than 154,800 people are currently employed in Australia’s restaurant industry [ii]



There are no major players in the industry which control a market share of greater than 5% [v]

Revenue in the industry is forecast to decrease by 15.0% during 2019-20 FY – however,  is predicted to recover by 5.1% in 2020-21 FY [iii]


The Restaurant industry is expected to grow at an annualised 2.1% over the next five years through 2025-26, as government restrictions are lifted and discretionary income recovers [vi]

How can OnDeck Help?

A quick and easy loan process

Our simple application process can be completed in minutes and you'll know within hours if your loan is approved

Flexible loans to suit your needs

With loans from $10,000 - $250,000 over 6-24 month terms, we work with you to understand what best suits your needs

Dedicated Australia-based Loan Specialists

You'll get an Australia-based Loan Specialist to assist you with your application

Find out how much funding you could get for your business

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What life stage is your restaurant business in?

OnDeck has specialised business guides and tips for every stage of your business.

Have a look below to see if your industry is listed.

Starting Out

Learning the ropes and honing your business owner skills

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Establishing yourself

Making a name for yourself and cementing yourself as a successful business owner

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Re-Invention and Evolution

Evolving as a business to newer and better heights

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OnDeck, the small business loan specialist

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I can't say enough about OnDeck. Always friendly and amazingly compassionate when times are bad which is quite rare for a Finance company. I love the Customer Service.

Pigeon Diner Pty Ltd

Restaurant Frequently Asked Questions

Banks and lending institutions offer a variety of business loans for restaurants. The application process and eligibility requirements are different for each, so ask these questions before taking out a loan.

You first need to evaluate your financial options. Once you’ve identified what you need, you can apply for a business loan.

First you need to create a business plan, which includes your organisation model, market research and pricing. Then you need to get the necessary finances to cover the start up costs. Don’t worry, it’s easier than you think to get a business loan with small business lenders like OnDeck.

Not if you apply for the right loan and have a good credit profile. You can learn more about Ondeck’s easy application process and eligibility requirements here.

Consistent delivery of high-quality services, which includes efficient processing systems.  Quality comes from offering better/unique services compared to your competitors, having experienced staff, and offering food your customers want. Efficiency focuses around POS systems, invoicing, payments, and customer experience.

Create a profitable restaurant by hiring and training dedicated staff, establishing a steady stream of new customers as well as a loyal customer base, building a good pricing strategy, and avoiding a cash flow crisis.

By focusing on key fundamentals that are vital for a successful business such as healthy financials, an experienced manager and staff, strong marketing strategies, and sustainable prices.

By focusing on key fundamentals that are vital for a successful business such as healthy financials, an experienced manager and staff, strong marketing strategies, and sustainable prices.

It takes most successful restaurants a couple years to consistently turn a profit. This extended timeline needs to be part of your business and financial plans.

Surround yourself with people who do – maybe that’s a business partner, experienced staff manager, mentor, etc. Ask for advice and research as much as you can about being a restaurant owner so you can build a strong business plan.

The cost of opening a restaurant is entirely dependent on the scale and location. A small, intimate space is cheaper than a large franchise with mandatory brand guidelines. You can see the business loan options OnDeck offers for restaurants to get an idea of available funding.

Australia has a massive restaurant industry with a variety of cuisines in high demand. Based on the location and local demographic, you could very well build a profitable restaurant.

You need to do a lot of research, create a strong business plan, find a well-trafficked location, and hire experienced staff. It’s also important to have sufficient resources and cash – oftentimes sourced through a business loan – to cover the start-up costs.

Licensing requirements vary by state, but most include a general business license, food business license, liquor license (if selling alcohol), and to comply with food safety regulations.

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