Gruniad accounting #fail

Given that the Gruniad’s parent company has demonstrated in previous years how to make themselves as tax efficient s possible, it might be expected by now that some of their skill in reading a balance sheet might have passed down to the reporters of said organ.

It seems though that such knowledge transfer isn’t taking place if today’s attempt to do a hatchet job on Lycamobile is anything to go by.

So, what has Lycamobile done to deserve the hairdryer treatment?

A mobile phone company that has paid no corporation tax for three years has become the Conservatives’ most generous corporate donor after giving more than £300,000 over the last nine months, new figures show.

The latest available figures show the company did not pay any tax between 2008 and 2010, despite generating a turnover of between £47m and £88m.

Now those with half a brain cell will already be screaming that turnover isn’t profit and you’d be correct – but the Gruniad article is written to fulfil an agenda and nowhere in the piece is the actual profit/loss mentioned.

So what are the relevant figures* (2011 numbers were not available)?

Year Turnover (£m) Profit (£m)
2009 47.90 -10.91
2010 88.04 -6.86

And now we know why Lycamobile paid no corporation tax in 2010 and 2011.

*I’d link to my source but a) it is my employer and b) it is behind an expensive paywall so you’ll have to take my word for it or go googling.


  1. Blue Burmese says:

    This is actually the second time that they’ve run this story –, first time around I suspect that it was a poor attempt at a hatchet job before the mayoral elections in reaction to the Ken Livingstone “tax dodging” stories.

  2. Angry Exile says:

    Yeah, but the really dodgy bit was donating to the teh ebil Tories, which I reckon is what’s upsetting The Graun. Had it been given to Labour, now worries. Waste of money either way if you ask me. Best use IMO would have been to have it changed into pound coins and put in socks for the next time some innumerate twat of a journo writes something about the company.

    • Misanthrope Girl says:

      Nothing new there. The cynics would say that the whole reason we have the waste of money which is Leveson is because NI switched horses and the Gruniad/BBC/Labour axis wanted revenge…