Monday, June 19, 2023

An update on what was Ireland’s largest taxpayer

We previously identified Microsoft Ireland Research as a likely candidate for Ireland’s largest taxpayer.  Microsoft Ireland remains a very large taxpayer but may have been usurped for top billing. Here will be provide a short update on Microsoft Ireland Research’s latest accounts.

The company has seen enormous revenue growth in recent years.  Since 2017 (the first year the information is available for) turnover has pretty much quadrupled from $11.6 billion to $48.2 billion. Operating profit has grown commensurately going from $5.1 billion to $21.4 billion.

There is more details on the taxation of the company in the previous post. Here we note that the tax charged in the accounts continues to be around 12 per cent of operating profit plus interest received.

The amount of tax has also quadrupled going from nearly $630 million in 2017 to $2.6 billion in 2022.  This would make Microsoft Ireland Research alone responsible for around 10 per cent of current Corporation Tax receipts and around 2 per cent of general government revenue.

Microsoft Ireland Research’s staff count has grown at a slower pace. In 2017, the average number of persons employed during the year was 443. This rose to 524 in 2020 and reached 831 in 2022.  The total wages and salaries bill was €112.6 million (giving an average of €135,000 per person employed).  Additional social insurance, pension and share-based remuneration were also incurred.

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