Google’s Irish tax bill falls to €263m as turnover rises to €47.5bn

New account filings show Google Ireland division paid €500m to group parent

Turnover at Google Ireland rose by €7.6 billion last year to €45.7 billion as the amount it paid in tax fell by nearly €9 million to €263 million.

Accounts newly filed at Companies Office show that Google Ireland recorded a €1.94 billion pretax profit in 2019 up from €1.7 billion a year earlier. Its employee numbers in Ireland rose nearly 10 per cent to 4,131.

The internet giant paid a €500 million dividend to its immediate parent, Irish-registered Google Europe, Middle East and Africa Unlimited, a new entity created last year. Its former parent was Bermuda-domiciled Google Ireland Holdings Unlimited.

Google runs its search and advertising business for Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) from Dublin and it also has two data centres in the capital.

The company said cost of sales increased by €2.7 billion last year to €11.6 billion due primarily to traffic acquisitions costs. Administration expenses rose €4.6 billion to €29.7 billion, largely due to the increase in headcount, a rise in the royalties paid to another group company and increased sales and marketing.

Google Ireland also incurred €267.7 million in costs in providing contract research and development services to other group companies in 2019.

“2019 was a strong year of sustained growth for Google Ireland as we continue to deliver value for our advertisers, publishers and partner networks across Europe, the Middle East and Africa,” a company spokeswoman said.

“As well as growing our turnover, we also added more than 350 new jobs last year.”

Total company assets increased €1.4 billion in 2019 to €11 billion with shareholders’ funds rising 19 per cent from €5.8 billion to €6.9 billion.

Google, which has been in Ireland for 17 years, paid out €617.9 million in staff-related costs last year, up from €543.7 million in 2018. At the end of 2019, the company had capital commitments of €92.8 million, the accounts show.