Maybe companies that want to do an offshore inversion should start a rock band first?

A friend of a friend just cited (in an email) the U2 rock band for having “social consciousness.” As noted in this February 2007 posting, referencing a New York Times article on the subject, the U2 folks had never paid any income tax and decided to invert themselves into an offshore Netherlands trust when the Irish tax man was coming for a piece of their pie.

If U2 is beloved despite minimizing their tax bill down to basically zero while U.S. companies are excoriated for trying to cut theirs to about 25┬ápercent (see this Forbes article on Walgreen’s, for example, where the company was trying to cut from 36 percent as a U.S. company to “the high 20% range”), wouldn’t it make sense for these companies first to merge with a popular band and then do the foreign inversion?

Philip Greenspun’s Weblog

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