Facebook Ireland revenues surge to €94m per day for 2019

Company’s corporate tax liability increased three-fold to €173.22 million

The average salary for Facebook employees in Dublin in 2019 was €103,443

Revenues at the main Dublin-based unit of social media giant, Facebook last year surged by 34.5 per cent to a record €34.32 billion – or an average of €94 million per day.

New accounts show that the €8.8 billion surge in revenues to €34.32 billion contributed to Facebook Ireland Ltd’s pre-tax profits increasing by 33 per cent to €481.88 million for 2019.

The company’s corporate tax liability increased almost three fold from €63.2 million to €173.22 million.

The chief reason for the sharp increase in corporation tax is Facebook Ireland agreeing in October 2020 “to the resolution of certain tax matters with tax authorities relating to prior tax years”.


The note states that this resulted in additional taxes due of €53 million.

The note also states that the tax liability is recognised for the 2019 accounts along with a related interest liability and expense of €27 million.

As a result, Facebook Ireland’s post-tax profits for last year totalled €306.65 million.

The accounts – signed off on December 2nd – also reveal that Facebook Ireland last year set aside €302.3 million concerning “amounts identified for administrative fines arising from various regulatory compliance matters principally under investigation by the relevant data protection supervisory authorities”.

The note states that Facebook Ireland’s best estimate of the expenditure used to discharge these obligations to be between €154 million and €541 million.

The note states that the estimate is based on advice from outside counsel, regulatory correspondence received to date, relevant mitigating factors and comparison with similar matters.

Facebook Ireland expects the regulatory matters to be resolved over the next two financial years.

The revenues generated by Facebook Ireland last year account for 59 per cent of the social media giant’s global revenues of $70.6 billion in 2019.

Numbers employed by Facebook Ireland last year increased by 46 per cent or 614 to 1,944.

The company last year paid out €201 million in salaries which equates to an average salary of €103,443.

The salary total of €201 million doesn’t include €58.49 million in share-based payments and €34 million in other benefits to employees.

Facebook Ireland’s staff are made up of 740 in sales and marketing, 512 in community operations, 448 in administration and 244 in engineering.

Directors’ pay increased from €706,000 to €1.3 million as an additional three people joined the board in 2019.

The company’s profits take account of non-cash depreciation costs of €47.3 million and research and development costs of €39 million.

The directors state that the revenue increase was due to growth in advertising revenues from third-party customers.

The company last year paid a dividend of €15 million.

On the impact of Covid 19, the directors state that it has continued business operations with limited disruption and has remained engaged in performing its principal activities.

The company’s largest expense was administrative expenses totalling €32.54 billion.

The company recorded an operating profit of €488 million and net interest paid out of €7 million resulted in the pre-tax profit of €481.88 million.

At the end of 2019, Facebook Ireland’s shareholder funds totalled €2.23 billion that included accumulated profits of €1 billion.

The company’s cash funds last year increased from €1.2 billion to €1.79 billion.

Gordon Deegan

Gordon Deegan

Gordon Deegan is a contributor to The Irish Times