back to article Yahoo!: Who! cares! what! US! taxman! thinks!, we'll! spinoff! Alibaba! anyway!

Yahoo! says it's going to press ahead with its plan to spin off its multibillion-dollar stake in Chinese e-commerce firm Alibaba, despite failing to receive a favorable ruling from the US Internal Revenue Service. CEO Marissa Mayer first announced the plan, which would see Yahoo! transfer its 384 million Alibaba shares to a …

  1. elDog Silver badge

    So if I put my meager holdings in Aabaco I'll be free of the IRS too?

    I realize this deal is only for real grown-ups - like $100,000,000 ones. But perhaps the rest of us could use it as a conduit to move our funds into a non-taxable off-shore.

    If there isn't already something for people of modest means ($10,000 +/-), then it seems like a good business model for some other shyster (Kim?).

    Why should only the fat cats be able to play with the IRS mice?

    1. Mark 85 Silver badge

      Re: So if I put my meager holdings in Aabaco I'll be free of the IRS too?

      Why should only the fat cats be able to play with the IRS mice?

      The fat cats have expensive lawyers and lobbyists to "persuade" the IRS to look elsewhere. Kind of like waving ones hand and saying "this is not the taxable income you are looking for".

      BTW, Congress does authorize companies not to pay taxes. A look at the tax code will reveal things like: "Exempt is a company formed at exactly 1:32 pm on December 15, 2012 in the county of XXXX and the state of XXXX" or with similar, obscure wording. The lobbyist, the company, and IRS will know who it is.

    2. DougS Silver badge

      You misunderstand

      Yahoo! acquired shares in Alibaba years ago when they were worth much less. It went IPO, so the value of Yahoo's holdings had climbed a whole lot - worth more than the rest of Yahoo! All they're trying to do is split the company into two pieces, one that holds the Alibaba and one that's Yahoo!

      If the Alibaba holdings were US based this likely wouldn't be a problem, the question I imagine the IRS is struggling with is whether this transaction is effectively repatriating the value of Alibaba. It will be taxable income to the shareholders no matter what, the question is whether it is taxable first at a corporate level due to that repatriation.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: You misunderstand

        This seems too believable.

        I really love creative accountancy.

  2. Robert Helpmann?? Silver badge
    Childcatcher

    They takes their chances

    There's still no guarantee that will work out now, because the IRS hasn't issued any further rulings.

    I wonder if this is a case of providing Yahoo! enough rope. Given how large corporations evade taxation, perhaps the IRS is simply using the tools it has in order to collect.

    1. ratfox Silver badge

      Re: They takes their chances

      I think Yahoo has just decided that they needed to get rid of their shares of Alibaba, one way or another, with or without being taxed for it. So they might as well go ahead and do it now, since all preparations have already been done.

      The IRS doesn't seem willing to decide fast, and Yahoo doesn't want to wait the possibly years it will take, when anyway it wouldn't change their decision.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What's going on, not a single use of the phrase tat bazaar. Standards are slipping.

    1. DavCrav Silver badge

      "What's going on, not a single use of the phrase tat bazaar. Standards are slipping."

      Isn't that eBay?

      1. ratfox Silver badge

        Indeed, Yahoo! is Purple Palace, which does appear in the article!

  4. Efros

    Pay yer effing taxes

    Jesus!

    1. Mark 85 Silver badge

      Re: Pay yer effing taxes

      They can't... taxes detract from "shareholder value".

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