Inside the world of business
Wallace’s version of events at odds with Revenue’s rules
BELEAGUERED WEXFORD TD Mick Wallace, in his comments to The Irish Times last week, appeared to give a version of his obligations in relation to VAT that is at variance with what the Revenue requires.
Wallace said he used deposits placed by people on apartments his company was building to finish the project when the banks began to close the taps on his funding.
He had taken in deposits of about €40,000-€50,000 on each apartment sale and used this money to fund other work. “The bank was taking all the sale money and we had spent the deposit money and so we couldn’t pay the €1.4 million that was due in VAT,” explained Wallace.
Property developers are obliged to book deposits in their bi-monthly VAT returns, and make the associated VAT payments on the 19th day of the month following the two-month period for which each return accounts.
Maybe this is what Wallace did, but the language he used in his interview with The Irish Times last week is unclear.
He didn’t answer calls from this newspaper yesterday. When he does come to make a public statement, it will be worth looking out for whether he declared the VAT on the deposits. If he didn’t then, it would appear he was making a whole series of misleading returns.
The last set of filed accounts for MJ Wallace Ltd, for the year to the end of August 2008, showed an outstanding VAT liability of €76,263.
Cook’s recipe for Apple includes keeping software developers sweet
APPLE’S CHIEF executive Tim Cook is marking a year in the job this August. Yesterday he took to the stage to launch the firm’s annual Worldwide Developers conference, which opened in San Francisco.
Last year’s conference was the last Apple event led by Steve Jobs before he died in October. During it he introduced the iCloud service.
Cook is no doubt hoping that by introducing yet more new features to the range – this time revamped MacBook offerings – the firm can make its products even more alluring to a public that seems to have an enormous appetite for Apple.
Apple is expected to release the next version of its mobile operating software, the iOS6, as well as spruce up its MacBook line-up. The firm will also add new services, such as in-house mobile mapping and improved Siri software to help keep at bay Google and its fast-growing Android mobile platform.
However, the conference is not necessarily about luring yet more customers to its stores. The real target is to woo software developers to the Apple brand.
More than ever, Apple finds itself in a pitched battle with Google: in smartphones, cloud computing and a never-ending competition to attract the best software developers. These developers are the lynchpin of the App store business model that already boasts more than 650,000 games, magazine and productivity tools.
The success of Apple’s App Store has helped create a market for applications that will reach $58 billion in 2014, according to Gartner Research. More than 30 billion apps have been downloaded from Apple’s store, and developers have received $5 billion from the sales. Apple shares 70 per cent of the revenue raised from app-store sales.
The popularity of the app store format has led others eagerly to join the fray. Facebook opened an online bazaar last week. Google’s store has more than 500,000 apps, while Microsoft has lined up design firms, recruited interns and sent engineers on an around-the- world road show to line the shelves of its app store.
The battlelines are being drawn and the beneficiaries may well be the developers who come up with the sharpest apps. The task of persuading them to continue to develop for Apple rather than rivals falls upon Cook.
During the week he will outline his vision for the firm, but the focus will be on persuading the best software developers to stick with his firm rather than be lured by rivals. It’s a task that may well define his first year as chief executive.
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