Holding company

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A holding company is a company whose primary business is holding a controlling interest in the securities of other companies. [1] A holding company usually does not produce goods or services itself. Its purpose is to own shares of other companies to form a corporate group.

Contents

In many jurisdictions around the world, holding companies are usually called parent companies, which, besides holding stock in other companies, can conduct trade and other business activities themselves. Holding companies reduce risk for the shareholders, and can permit the ownership and control of a number of different companies. The New York Times also refers to the term parent holding company. [2]

Holding companies are also created to hold assets, such as intellectual property or trade secrets, that are protected from the operation company. That creates a smaller risk when it comes to litigation.

In the United States, 80% of stock, in voting and value, must be owned before tax consolidation benefits such as tax-free dividends can be claimed. [3] That is, if Company A owns 80% or more of the stock of Company B, Company A will not pay taxes on dividends paid by Company B to its stockholders, as the payment of dividends from B to A is essentially transferring cash within a single enterprise. Any other shareholders of Company B will pay the usual taxes on dividends, as they are legitimate and ordinary dividends to these shareholders.

Sometimes, a company intended to be a pure holding company identifies itself as such by adding "Holding" or "Holdings" to its name. [4] [5]

By country

Australia

The parent company–subsidiary company relationship is defined by Part 1.2, Division 6, Section 46 of the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth), which states: [6]

A body corporate (in this section called the first body) is a subsidiary of another body corporate if, and only if:

(a) the other body:
(i) controls the composition of the first body's board; or
(ii) is in a position to cast, or control the casting of, more than one-half of the maximum number of votes that might be cast at a general meeting of the first body; or
(iii) holds more than one-half of the issued share capital of the first body (excluding any part of that issued share capital that carries no right to participate beyond a specified amount in a distribution of either profits or capital); or
(b) the first body is a subsidiary of a subsidiary of the other body.

Canada

Toronto-based lawyer Michael Finley has stated, "The emerging trend that has seen international plaintiffs permitted to proceed with claims against Canadian parent companies for the allegedly wrongful activity of their foreign subsidiaries means that the corporate veil is no longer a silver bullet to the heart of a plaintiff’s case." [7]

Singapore

The parent subsidiary company relationship is defined by Part 1, Section 5, Subsection 1 of the Companies Act, which states: [8]

5.—(1) For the purposes of this Act, a corporation shall, subject to subsection (3), be deemed to be a subsidiary of another corporation, if —

(a) that other corporation —
(i) controls the composition of the board of directors of the first-mentioned corporation; or
[Act 36 of 2014 wef 01/07/2015]
(ii) controls more than half of the voting power of the first-mentioned corporation; or
(iii) [Deleted by Act 36 of 2014 wef 01/07/2015]
(b) the first-mentioned corporation is a subsidiary of any corporation which is that other corporation's subsidiary

United Kingdom

In the United Kingdom, it is generally held that an organisation holding a 'controlling stake' in a company (a holding of over 51% of the stock) is in effect the de facto parent company of the firm, having overriding material influence over the held company's operations, even if no formal full takeover has been enacted. Once a full takeover or purchase is enacted, the held company is seen to have ceased to operate as an independent entity but to have become a tending subsidiary of the purchasing company, which, in turn, becomes the parent company of the subsidiary. (A holding below 50% could be sufficient to give a parent company material influence if they are the largest individual shareholder or if they are placed in control of the running of the operation by non-operational shareholders.) [9] [10]

Company law

In the United Kingdom, the term "Holding Company" is defined by the Companies Act 2006 at section 1159. [11] It defines a Holding Company as a Company that holds a majority of the voting rights in another company, OR is a member of another company and has the right to appoint or remove a majority of its board of directors, OR is a member of another company and controls alone, pursuant to an agreement with other members, a majority of the voting rights in that company.

United States

Banking

After the financial crisis of 2007–08, many U.S. investment banks converted to holding companies. According to the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council's (FFIEC) website, JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Citigroup, Wells Fargo, and Goldman Sachs were the five largest bank holding companies in the finance sector, as of 31 December 2013, based on total assets. [12]

Utilities

The Public Utility Holding Company Act of 1935 in the United States caused many energy companies to divest their subsidiary businesses. Between 1938 and 1958 the number of holding companies declined from 216 to 18. [13] An energy law passed in 2005 removed the 1935 requirements, and has led to mergers and holding company formation among power marketing and power brokering companies. [14]

Broadcasting

In US broadcasting, many major media conglomerates have purchased smaller broadcasters outright, but have not changed the broadcast licenses to reflect this, resulting in stations that are (for example) still licensed to Jacor and Citicasters, effectively making them such as subsidiary companies of their owner iHeartMedia. This is sometimes done on a per-market basis. For example, in Atlanta both WNNX and later WWWQ are licensed to "WNNX LiCo, Inc." (LiCo meaning "license company"), both owned by Susquehanna Radio (which was later sold to Cumulus Media). In determining caps to prevent excessive concentration of media ownership, all of these are attributed to the parent company, as are leased stations, as a matter of broadcast regulation.

Personal holding company

In the United States, a personal holding company is defined in section 542 of the Internal Revenue Code. A corporation is a personal holding company if both of the following requirements are met: [15]

Parent company

A parent company is a company that owns 51% or more voting stock in another firm (or subsidiary) to control management and operations by influencing or electing its board of directors. The second company is deemed to be a subsidiary of the parent company. The definition of a parent company differs from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, with the definition normally being defined by way of laws dealing with companies in that jurisdiction.

When an existing company establishes a new company and keeps majority shares with itself, and invites other companies to buy minority shares, it is called a parent company. A parent company could simply be a company that wholly owns another company, which is then known as a "wholly owned subsidiary".

See also

Related Research Articles

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A corporation is an organization—usually a group of people or a company—authorized by the state to act as a single entity and recognized as such in law for certain purposes. Early incorporated entities were established by charter. Most jurisdictions now allow the creation of new corporations through registration. Corporations come in many different types but are usually divided by the law of the jurisdiction where they are chartered based on two aspects: by whether they can issue stock, or by whether they are formed to make a profit. Depending on the number of owners, a corporation can be classified as aggregate or sole.

Dividend

teri mau ni pudhi to its shareholders, usually as a distribution of profits}}

A dividend tax is a tax imposed by a jurisdiction on dividends paid by a corporation to its shareholders (stockholders). The primary tax liability is that of the shareholder, though a tax obligation may also be imposed on the corporation in the form of a withholding tax. In some cases the withholding tax may be the extent of the tax liability in relation to the dividend. A dividend tax is in addition to any tax imposed directly on the corporation on its profits. Some jurisdictions do not tax dividends.

Joint-stock company Business entity which is owned by shareholders

A joint-stock company is a business entity in which shares of the company's stock can be bought and sold by shareholders. Each shareholder owns company stock in proportion, evidenced by their shares. Shareholders are able to transfer their shares to others without any effects to the continued existence of the company.

A subsidiary, subsidiary company or daughter company is a company owned or controlled by another company, which is called the parent company or holding company. Two subsidiaries that belong to the same parent company are called sister companies.

Controlled foreign corporation (CFC) rules are features of an income tax system designed to limit artificial deferral of tax by using offshore low taxed entities. The rules are needed only with respect to income of an entity that is not currently taxed to the owners of the entity. Generally, certain classes of taxpayers must include in their income currently certain amounts earned by foreign entities they or related persons control.

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Demutualization is the process by which a customer-owned mutual organization (mutual) or co-operative changes legal form to a joint stock company. It is sometimes called stocking or privatization. As part of the demutualization process, members of a mutual usually receive a "windfall" payout, in the form of shares in the successor company, a cash payment, or a mixture of both. Mutualization or mutualisation is the opposite process, wherein a shareholder-owned company is converted into a mutual organization, typically through takeover by an existing mutual organization. Furthermore, re-mutualization depicts the process of aligning or refreshing the interest and objectives of the members of the mutual society.

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Consolidation (business) Merger and acquisition of many smaller companies into much larger ones

In business, consolidation or amalgamation is the merger and acquisition of many smaller companies into a few much larger ones. In the context of financial accounting, consolidation refers to the aggregation of financial statements of a group company as consolidated financial statements. The taxation term of consolidation refers to the treatment of a group of companies and other entities as one entity for tax purposes. Under the Halsbury's Laws of England, 'amalgamation' is defined as "a blending together of two or more undertakings into one undertaking, the shareholders of each blending company, becoming, substantially, the shareholders of the blended undertakings. There may be amalgamations, either by transfer of two or more undertakings to a new company, or to the transfer of one or more companies to an existing company".

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Company Association or collection of individuals

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A corporate group or group of companies is a collection of parent and subsidiary corporations that function as a single economic entity through a common source of control. The concept of a group is frequently used in tax law, accounting and company law to attribute the rights and duties of one member of the group to another or the whole. If the corporations are engaged in entirely different businesses, the group is called a conglomerate. The forming of corporate groups usually involves consolidation via mergers and acquisitions, although the group concept focuses on the instances in which the merged and acquired corporate entities remain in existence rather than the instances in which they are dissolved by the parent. The group may be owned by a holding company which may have no actual operations.

A squeeze-out or squeezeout, sometimes synonymous with freeze-out, is the compulsory sale of the shares of minority shareholders of a joint-stock company for which they receive a fair cash compensation.

Stock certificate

In corporate law, a stock certificate is a legal document that certifies ownership of a specific number of shares or stock in a corporation. Historically, certificates may have been required to evidence entitlement to dividends, with a receipt for the payment being endorsed on the back; and the original certificate may have been required to be provided to effect the transfer of the shareholding. Over time, these functions have been rendered redundant by statutory schemes to streamline the administrative burden on corporations. For example, most jurisdictions now impose an obligation on corporations to pay dividends to shareholders registered at a relevant point of time without the need to produce the share certificate as proof of entitlement and the certificate is no longer required to be produced with a transfer of a shareholding. In some jurisdictions today, the issue of paper stock certificates may be dispensed with, at least in some circumstances, and many corporations now provide a holding statement in lieu of a share certificate for each parcel of shares owned.

Corporate tax in the United States

Corporate tax is imposed in the United States at the federal, most state, and some local levels on the income of entities treated for tax purposes as corporations. Since January 1, 2018, the nominal federal corporate tax rate in the United States of America is a flat 21% due to the passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. State and local taxes and rules vary by jurisdiction, though many are based on federal concepts and definitions. Taxable income may differ from book income both as to timing of income and tax deductions and as to what is taxable. The corporate Alternative Minimum Tax was also eliminated by the 2017 reform, but some states have alternative taxes. Like individuals, corporations must file tax returns every year. They must make quarterly estimated tax payments. Groups of corporations controlled by the same owners may file a consolidated return.

A concern is a type of business group common in Europe, particularly in Germany. It results from the merger of several legally independent companies into a single economic entity under unified management.

United States corporate law

United States corporate law regulates the governance, finance and power of corporations in US law. Every state and territory has its own basic corporate code, while federal law creates minimum standards for trade in company shares and governance rights, found mostly in the Securities Act of 1933 and the Securities and Exchange Act of 1934, as amended by laws like the Sarbanes–Oxley Act of 2002 and the Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. The US Constitution was interpreted by the US Supreme Court to allow corporations to incorporate in the state of their choice, regardless of where their headquarters are. Over the 20th century, most major corporations incorporated under the Delaware General Corporation Law, which offered lower corporate taxes, fewer shareholder rights against directors, and developed a specialized court and legal profession. Nevada has done the same. Twenty-four states follow the Model Business Corporation Act, while New York and California are important due to their size.

Canadian corporate law

Canadian corporate law concerns the operation of corporations in Canada, which can be established under either federal or provincial authority.

References

  1. "Definition of HOLDING COMPANY". www.merriam-webster.com. Retrieved 3 September 2021.
  2. "C.&O. Acts to Broaden System And Form a Holding Company". The New York Times . 21 February 1973. Archived from the original on 6 May 2021. Retrieved 6 May 2021.
  3. I.R.C. § 1504(a); I.R.C. § 243(a)(3).
  4. "Retired Brands Bring Dollars and Memories-Advertising". The New York Times . 8 December 2010. Archived from the original on 6 May 2021. Retrieved 6 May 2021. owns a company called Brands USA Holdings
  5. "Williams Holdings Makes Bid for Racal". The New York Times . 18 September 1991. Archived from the original on 6 May 2021. Retrieved 6 May 2021.
  6. "Corporations Act 2001". Federal Register of Legislation.
  7. Melnitzer, Julius (25 June 2019). "Why parent companies may soon be unable to claim immunity from their subsidiary's liabilities". Financial Post . Archived from the original on 3 August 2019. Retrieved 6 May 2021.
  8. "Companies Act". Singapore Statues Online. Archived from the original on 6 June 2019. Retrieved 12 March 2020.
  9. P. Davies (2015). Shareholders in the United Kingdom (PDF). Archived (PDF) from the original on 6 May 2021. Retrieved 6 May 2021.
  10. Dermot McCann (2010). The Political Economy of European Union. p. 78. ISBN   9780745638911.
  11. "Companies Act 2006 - s.1159". legislation.gov.uk. Archived from the original on 25 December 2019. Retrieved 9 January 2020.
  12. "Holding Companies with Assets Greater Than $10 Billion". National Information Center. 30 June 2014. Archived from the original on 13 April 2014. Retrieved 28 November 2014.
  13. Hirsh, Richard. "Emergence of Electrical Utilities in America". Archived from the original on 1 September 2012.
  14. "Public vs. Private Power : from FDR to Today". PBS.org. Archived from the original on 8 September 2017. Retrieved 28 November 2014.
  15. Cuiffo, Donna-Marie (1 August 1993). "Our Greatest Hits / The Personal Holding Company Trap: Federal Taxation". The CPA Journal. The New York State Society of CPAs. Archived from the original on 27 April 2019. Retrieved 6 December 2017.