American companies with offshore operations previously faced the odd situation of having to pay tax in jurisdictions they make their money, then pay US taxes at 35 per cent on those profits too. Rather than pay twice, plenty left their cash offshore.
Are you sure about that? IANAtaxL, but I understood that, just as for US individuals, foreign taxes paid can be offset against US taxes due. Hence the EU tax grab is actually a raid on the US Treasury, not Apple's or Google's.
What happens if the EU repeats their retrospective tax grabs will be an interesting one for the lawyers.