BMC Software is the latest multinational to find Singapore's tax inducements more appealing than Australia's.
The vendor is on the verge of ruling out Sydney as the site for its new regional distribution centre. Sydney had been the preferred location until BMC factored in the tax implications of the decision.
BMC Australia managing dir-ector Bill Dunn said: "It is becoming apparent that the centre will go to Singapore because, tax-wise, it would be prohibitive to put it here."
According to Dunn the final decision has not yet been made but it "is the way things are leaning".
BMC has earmarked Sydney as the site for a regional administration and finance centre and logically the distribution centre should be located in the same city.
But the tax breaks offered by Singapore have their own logic as far as vendors such as BMC are concerned.
"If we'd been making that decision today, it wouldn't have gone into Australia," Dunn said. BMC's staff numbers in Australia have stagnated around 20 for the past two years while zooming from near-zero to 40 in Asia over the same period.
But the company's multiple investments in Australian-developed software have been made because they stood on their own business merits.
Those investments began a number of years ago with the $30 million purchase from an Australian developer of the software which has grown into BMC's Patrol range of application and data management packages.
Since then, BMC has contracted Western Australian software company Fundi to do a series of R&D projects. And it recently signed an agreement to help Sydney developer Insight Innovations distribute an alarm management package worldwide, badged as the Patrol Alarm Manager knowledge module.