13 Nov 2015 11:00am

1D pay more UK tax than Facebook

One Direction paid almost 1,900 times more UK tax than Facebook did last year

The four current members, along with former member Zayn Malik who left the band in March, earned more than £45m in pre-tax profit last year. That’s ten times the previous year’s figure of £4.8m.

The group’s company, 1D Media handed over £8.2m of its profits in corporation tax to HMRC, according to reports by trade publication Music Business Worldwide.

Facebook’s UK operations paid £4,327 in UK corporation tax in 2014.

The five original members of One Direction Harry Styles, Niall Horan, Liam Payne, Louis Tomlinson and now-departed Zayn Malik became the sole directors of 1D Media in 2010.

The company filed its 2014 accounts with Companies House revealing that the band turned over £73.7m in the year, with a post-tax profit of £34.98m.

1D Media handed over £10.47m in taxation with £8.24m of that figure paid in UK corporation tax. That’s 18.1% of the band’s £45.4m pre-tax profit.

Mid-tier accountancy firm Grant Thornton audits One Direction’s accounts and Payne signs them off on behalf of his band mates.

In total, the group handed over 23% of its pre-tax profit.

In contrast, Facebook posted a pre-tax loss on its UK operations minimising its tax obligations, despite paying UK staff £35m in share bonuses.

For years, Facebook UK has courted controversy in relation to its UK tax affairs, paying zero UK corporation tax in 2012.

Many have pointed out that Facebook’s £4,327 tax bill is less than that of the average British worker. The average annual salary currently sits at £26,500, resulting in income tax payments of £3,108 and £2,213 in national insurance contributions.

Sinead Moore


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