Tax issues continue to trouble Omnicom Publicis Groupe merger

Maurice Levy and John Wren: Publicis and Omnicom chiefs respectively
Maurice Levy and John Wren: Publicis and Omnicom chiefs respectively

Omincom and Publicis Groupe have declined to comment on recent reports that the complicated structure of their proposed merger is coming under increased pressure from European tax authorities

HM Revenue & Customs has reportedly asked for a greater number of senior staff to be located in the UK in order for it to green-light the plans, which include the merged company’s tax base being located in the UK.

Under the plans for the merged company, Publicis Omnicom Group will be incorporated in the Netherlands and be run operationally from New York and Paris.

An HMRC spokesman said: "HMRC does not comment on individual cases. HMRC has a duty to ensure all companies pay the tax due in accordance with UK tax law, and we do so consistently across taxpayers.

"We continue to be vigilant and active in pursuing this, including identifying and addressing new threats as they emerge. The UK is committed to tackling aggressive tax planning and harmful tax practices."

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