Yahoo! pulls out of Spain! for tax! benefits! goes back to Ireland! (but it’s bankrupt! anyway)

Yahoo! has sent a mass email to all of its Spanish users informing them that “to continue our excellent service” blah blah blah your user contract will be transferred to Yahoo! Ireland. I got one myself. (I use Yahoo!? Blimey. Oh yes, to fool Google.)

So if you want to continue using Yahoo! in Spain, be aware that it won’t follow Spanish rules, and you have to abide by Irish laws. You can shut up and agree, or you can close your account. Yahoo! doesn’t care either way.

More to the point, according to El Pais, it’s off to save itself cash by relocating to Ireland and not having to pay any Spanish tax.

Although (according, again, to El Pais,) Yahoo! paid no corporate tax whatsoever in Spain last year. In fact, it lost 0,9 million euros, and has a negative balance of 22 million euros.

In fact, this year, either the parent company had to pump a load of cash into the Spanish arm, or it had to dissolve under Spanish corporation rule. The US parent company had extended it a 100 million euro credit line which allowed the company to keep operating (under Spanish law) during 2013.

It’s not that Yahoo! doesn’t make any money in Spain, it probably does. What happens is that it doesn’t bill any money in Spain. 86% of its Spanish sales are sold via Luxembourg, and the rest via Ireland as “R&D patent payments”. They have a small office in Madrid for the look of the thing, and to take the big clients out to dinner.

The 10 big technology companies appear, again according to El Pais, to have turned over 577,8 million euros in Spain in 2012, but paid only a little over 1 million euros in tax.

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