By Walt Hickey CBS A new report from the Centre for Research on Multinational Corporations alleges that ViacomCBS and its predecessor companies have, since 2002, avoided paying $3.96 billion in U.S. corporate income taxes by routing IP and profits through subsidiaries in Barbados, the Bahamas, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Britain. Essentially, the $30 billion the company has made through its film and television franchise royalties overseas has gone untaxed in the U.S., according to the report. That kind of revenue is an increasingly important chunk of the business in the age of streaming, with 24 percent of yearly sales derived from licensing at Viacom since 2018. The gist of the hustle is simple: set up a Dutch company, transfer the foreign licensing rights to big franchises to that shingle, and suck all the global revenues back into that untaxed company through licensing fees.
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