Tag: Identifying intangibles

§ 1.482-4(f)(3)(ii) Example 2.

The facts are the same as in Example 1. As a result of its sales and marketing activities, USSub develops a list of several hundred creditworthy customers that regularly purchase AA trademarked products. Neither the terms of the contract between FP and USSub nor the relevant intellectual property law specify which party owns the customer list. Because USSub has knowledge of the contents of the list, and has practical control over its use and dissemination, USSub is considered the sole owner of the customer list for purposes of this paragraph (f)(3) ... Read more

§ 1.482-4(f)(3)(ii) Example 1.

FP, a foreign corporation, is the registered holder of the AA trademark in the United States. FP licenses to its U.S. subsidiary, USSub, the exclusive rights to manufacture and market products in the United States under the AA trademark. FP is the owner of the trademark pursuant to intellectual property law. USSub is the owner of the license pursuant to the terms of the license, but is not the owner of the trademark. See paragraphs (b)(3) and (4) of this section (defining an intangible as, among other things, a trademark or a license) ... Read more

§ 1.482-4(f)(3)(i)(B) Cost sharing arrangements.

The rules in this paragraph (f)(3) regarding ownership with respect to cost shared intangibles and cost sharing arrangements will apply only as provided in § 1.482-7 ... Read more

§ 1.482-4(f)(3)(i) Identification of owner –

(A) In general. The legal owner of intangible property pursuant to the intellectual property law of the relevant jurisdiction, or the holder of rights constituting an intangible property pursuant to contractual terms (such as the terms of a license) or other legal provision, will be considered the sole owner of the respective intangible property for purposes of this section unless such ownership is inconsistent with the economic substance of the underlying transactions. See § 1.482-1(d)(3)(ii)(B) (identifying contractual terms). If no owner of the respective intangible property is identified under the intellectual property law of the relevant jurisdiction, or pursuant to contractual terms (including terms imputed pursuant to § 1.482-1(d)(3)(ii)(B)) or other legal provision, then the controlled taxpayer who has control of the intangible property, based on all the facts and circumstances, will be considered the sole owner of the intangible property for purposes of this section ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.95

A second and related issue involves the importance of ensuring that all intangibles transferred in a particular transaction have been identified. It may be the case, for example, that intangibles are so intertwined that it is not possible, as a substantive matter, to transfer one without transferring the other. Indeed, it will often be the case that a transfer of one intangible will necessarily imply the transfer of other intangibles. In such cases it is important to identify all of the intangibles made available to the transferee as a consequence of an intangibles transfer, applying the principles of Section D. 1 of Chapter I. For example, the transfer of rights to use a trademark under a licence agreement will usually also imply the licensing of the reputational value, sometimes referred to as goodwill, associated with that trademark, where it is the licensor who has built up such goodwill. Any licence fee required should consider both the trademark and the associated ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.31

Specific characteristics of a given market may affect the arm’s length conditions of transactions in that market. For example, the high purchasing power of households in a particular market may affect the prices paid for certain luxury consumer goods. Similarly, low prevailing labour costs, proximity to markets, favourable weather conditions and the like may affect the prices paid for specific goods and services in a particular market. Such market specific characteristics are not capable, however, of being owned or controlled, and are therefore not intangibles within the meaning of Section A. 1., and should be taken into account in a transfer pricing analysis through the required comparability analysis. See Section D.6 of Chapter I for guidance regarding the transfer pricing treatment of market specific characteristics ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.30

In some circumstances group synergies contribute to the level of income earned by an MNE group. Such group synergies can take many different forms including streamlined management, elimination of costly duplication of effort, integrated systems, purchasing or borrowing power, etc. Such features may have an effect on the determination of arm’s length conditions for controlled transactions and should be addressed for transfer pricing purposes as comparability factors. As they are not owned or controlled by an enterprise, they are not intangibles within the meaning of Section A. 1. See Section D.8 of Chapter I for a discussion of the transfer pricing treatment of group synergies ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.29

The requirement that goodwill and ongoing concern value be taken into account in pricing transactions in no way implies that the residual measures of goodwill derived for some specific accounting or business valuation purposes are necessarily appropriate measures of the price that would be paid for the transferred business or licence rights, together with their associated goodwill and ongoing concern value, by independent parties. Accounting and business valuation measures of goodwill and ongoing concern value do not, as a general rule, correspond to the arm’s length price of transferred goodwill or ongoing concern value in a transfer pricing analysis. Depending on the facts and circumstances, however, accounting valuations and the information supporting such valuations can provide a useful starting point in conducting a transfer pricing analysis. The absence of a single precise definition of goodwill makes it essential for taxpayers and tax administrations to describe specifically relevant intangibles in connection with a transfer pricing analysis, and to consider whether independent ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.28

It is not necessary for purposes of this chapter to establish a precise definition of goodwill or ongoing concern value for transfer pricing purposes or to define when goodwill or ongoing concern value may or may not constitute an intangible. It is important to recognise, however, that an important and monetarily significant part of the compensation paid between independent enterprises when some or all of the assets of an operating business are transferred may represent compensation for something referred to in one or another of the alternative descriptions of goodwill or ongoing concern value. When similar transactions occur between associated enterprises, such value should be taken into account in determining an arm’s length price for the transaction. When the reputational value sometimes referred to by the term goodwill is transferred to or shared with an associated enterprise in connection with a transfer or licence of a trademark or other intangible that reputational value should be taken into account in determining ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.27

Depending on the context, the term goodwill can be used to refer to a number of different concepts. In some accounting and business valuation contexts, goodwill reflects the difference between the aggregate value of an operating business and the sum of the values of all separately identifiable tangible and intangible assets. Alternatively, goodwill is sometimes described as a representation of the future economic benefits associated with business assets that are not individually identified and separately recognised. In still other contexts goodwill is referred to as the expectation of future trade from existing customers. The term ongoing concern value is sometimes referred to as the value of the assembled assets of an operating business over and above the sum of the separate values of the individual assets. It is generally recognised that goodwill and ongoing concern value cannot be segregated or transferred separately from other business assets. See paragraphs 9.68-9.70 for a discussion of the related notion of a transfer of ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.26

Limited rights in intangibles are commonly transferred by means of a licence or other similar contractual arrangement, whether written, oral or implied. Such licensed rights may be limited as to field of use, term of use, geography or in other ways. Such limited rights in intangibles are themselves intangibles within the meaning of Section A. 1 ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.25

Rights under contracts may also be important to a particular business and can cover a wide range of business relationships. They may include, among others, contracts with suppliers and key customers, and agreements to make available the services of one or more employees. Rights under contracts are intangibles within the meaning of Section A. 1 ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.24

Government licences and concessions may be important to a particular business and can cover a wide range of business relationships. They may include, among others, a government grant of rights to exploit specific natural resources or public goods (e.g. a licence of bandwidth spectrum), or to carry on a specific business activity. Government licences and concessions are intangibles within the meaning of Section A. 1. However, government licences and concessions should be distinguished from company registration obligations that are preconditions for doing business in a particular jurisdiction. Such obligations are not intangibles within the meaning of Section A. 1 ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.23

The term “brand” is sometimes used interchangeably with the terms “trademark” and “trade name.” In other contexts a brand is thought of as a trademark or trade name imbued with social and commercial significance. A brand may, in fact, represent a combination of intangibles and/or other items, including among others, trademarks, trade names, customer relationships, reputational characteristics, and goodwill. It may sometimes be difficult or impossible to segregate or separately transfer the various items contributing to brand value. A brand may consist of a single intangible, or a collection of intangibles, within the meaning of Section A. 1 ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.22

A trade name (often but not always the name of an enterprise) may have the same force of market penetration as a trademark and may indeed be registered in some specific form as a trademark. The trade names of certain MNEs may be readily recognised, and may be used in marketing a variety of goods and services. Trade names are intangibles within the meaning of Section A. 1 ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.21

A trademark is a unique name, symbol, logo or picture that the owner may use to distinguish its products and services from those of other entities. Proprietary rights in trademarks are often confirmed through a registration system. The registered owner of a trademark may exclude others from using the trademark in a manner that would create confusion in the marketplace. A trademark registration may continue indefinitely if the trademark is continuously used and the registration appropriately renewed. Trademarks may be established for goods or services, and may apply to a single product or service, or to a line of products or services. Trademarks are perhaps most familiar at the consumer market level, but they are likely to be encountered at all market levels. Trademarks are intangibles within the meaning of Section A. 1 ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.20

Know-how and trade secrets are proprietary information or knowledge that assist or improve a commercial activity, but that are not registered for protection in the manner of a patent or trademark. Know-how and trade secrets generally consist of undisclosed information of an industrial, commercial or scientific nature arising from previous experience, which has practical application in the operation of an enterprise. Know-how and trade secrets may relate to manufacturing, marketing, research and development, or any other commercial activity. The value of know-how and trade secrets is often dependent on the ability of the enterprise to preserve the confidentiality of the know-how or trade secret. In certain industries the disclosure of information necessary to obtain patent protection could assist competitors in developing alternative solutions. Accordingly, an enterprise may, for sound business reasons, choose not to register patentable know-how, which may nonetheless contribute substantially to the success of the enterprise. The confidential nature of know-how and trade secrets may be protected to ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.19

A patent is a legal instrument that grants an exclusive right to its owner to use a given invention for a limited period of time within a specific geography. A patent may relate to a physical object or to a process. Patentable inventions are often developed through risky and costly research and development activities. In some circumstances, however, small research and development expenditures can lead to highly valuable patentable inventions. The developer of a patent may try to recover its development costs (and earn a return) through the sale of products covered by the patent, by licensing others to use the patented invention, or by an outright sale of the patent. The exclusivity granted by a patent may, under some circumstances, allow the patent owner to earn premium returns from the use of its invention. In other cases, a patented invention may provide cost advantages to the owner that are not available to competitors. In still other situations, patents may ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.18

This section provides illustrations of items often considered in transfer pricing analyses involving intangibles. The illustrations are intended to clarify the provisions of Section A. 1., but this listing should not be used as a substitute for a detailed analysis. The illustrations are not intended to be comprehensive or to provide a complete listing of items that may or may not constitute intangibles. Numerous items not included in this listing of illustrations may be intangibles for transfer pricing purposes. The illustrations in this section should be adapted to the specific legal and regulatory environment that prevails in each country. Furthermore, the illustrations in this section should be considered and evaluated in the context of the comparability analysis (including the functional analysis) of the controlled transaction with the objective of better understanding how specific intangibles and items not treated as intangibles contribute to the creation of value in the context of the MNE’s global business. It should be emphasised that a ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.17

In certain instances these Guidelines refer to “unique and valuable” intangibles. “Unique and valuable” intangibles are those intangibles (i) that are not comparable to intangibles used by or available to parties to potentially comparable transactions, and (ii) whose use in business operations (e.g. manufacturing, provision of services, marketing, sales or administration) is expected to yield greater future economic benefits than would be expected in the absence of the intangible ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.16

Certain categories of intangibles are, however, commonly referred to in discussions of transfer pricing matters. To facilitate discussions, definitions of two such commonly used terms, “marketing intangibles” and “trade intangibles” are contained in the Glossary and referred to from time to time in the discussion in these Guidelines. It should be emphasised that generic references to marketing or trade intangibles do not relieve taxpayers or tax administrations from their obligation in a transfer pricing analysis to identify relevant intangibles with specificity, nor does the use of those terms suggest that a different approach should be applied in determining arm’s length conditions for transactions that involve either marketing intangibles or trade intangibles ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.15

In discussions of transfer pricing issues related to intangibles, it is sometimes the case that various categories of intangibles are described and labels applied. Distinctions are sometimes made between trade intangibles and marketing intangibles, between “soft” intangibles and “hard” intangibles, between routine and non-routine intangibles, and between other classes and categories of intangibles. The approach contained in this chapter for determining arm’s length prices in cases involving intangibles does not turn on these categorisations. Accordingly, no attempt is made in these Guidelines to delineate with precision various classes or categories of intangibles or to prescribe outcomes that turn on such categories ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.14

The guidance in this chapter is also not relevant to recognition of income, capitalisation of intangible development costs, amortisation, or similar matters. Thus, for example, a country may choose not to impose tax on the transfer of particular types of intangibles under specified circumstances. Similarly, a country may not permit amortisation of the cost of certain acquired items that would be considered intangibles under the definitions in this chapter and whose transfer may be subjected to tax at the time of the transfer in the transferor’s country. It is recognised that inconsistencies between individual country laws regarding such matters can sometimes give rise to either double taxation or double non-taxation ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.13

The guidance contained in this chapter is intended to address transfer pricing matters exclusively. It is not intended to have relevance for other tax purposes. For example, the Commentary on Article 12 of the OECD Model Tax Convention contains a detailed discussion of the definition of royalties under that Article (paragraphs 8 to 19). The Article 12 definition of “royalties” is not intended to provide any guidance on whether, and if so at what price, the use or transfer of intangibles would be remunerated between independent parties. It is therefore not relevant for transfer pricing purposes. Moreover, the manner in which a transaction is characterised for transfer pricing purposes has no relevance to the question of whether a particular payment constitutes a royalty or may be subjected to withholding tax under Article 12. The concept of intangibles for transfer pricing purposes and the definition of royalties for purposes of Article 12 of the OECD Model Tax Convention are two different ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.12

In a transfer pricing analysis of a matter involving intangibles, it is important to identify the relevant intangibles with specificity. The functional analysis should identify the relevant intangibles at issue, the manner in which they contribute to the creation of value in the transactions under review, the important functions performed and specific risks assumed in connection with the development, enhancement, maintenance, protection and exploitation of the intangibles and the manner in which they interact with other intangibles, with tangible assets and with business operations to create value. While it may be appropriate to aggregate intangibles for the purpose of determining arm’s length conditions for the use or transfer of the intangibles in certain cases, it is not sufficient to suggest that vaguely specified or undifferentiated intangibles have an effect on arm’s length prices or other conditions. A thorough functional analysis, including an analysis of the importance of identified relevant intangibles in the MNE’s global business, should support the determination of ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.11

Care should be taken in determining whether or when an intangible exists and whether an intangible has been used or transferred. For example, not all research and development expenditures produce or enhance an intangible, and not all marketing activities result in the creation or enhancement of an intangible ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.10

The identification of an item as an intangible is separate and distinct from the process for determining the price for the use or transfer of the item under the facts and circumstances of a given case. Depending on the industry sector and other facts specific to a particular case, exploitation of intangibles can account for either a large or small part of the MNE’s value creation. It should be emphasised that not all intangibles deserve compensation separate from the required payment for goods or services in all circumstances, and not all intangibles give rise to premium returns in all circumstances. For example, consider a situation in which an enterprise performs a service using non-unique know-how, where other comparable service providers have comparable know-how. In that case, even though know-how constitutes an intangible, it may be determined under the facts and circumstances that the know-how does not justify allocating a premium return to the enterprise, over and above normal returns earned ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.9

It is important to distinguish intangibles from market conditions or local market circumstances. Features of a local market, such as the level of disposable income of households in that market or the size or relative competitiveness of the market are not capable of being owned or controlled. While in some circumstances they may affect the determination of an arm’s length price for a particular transaction and should be taken into account in a comparability analysis, they are not intangibles for the purposes of Chapter VI. See Section D.6 of Chapter I ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.8

The availability and extent of legal, contractual, or other forms of protection may affect the value of an item and the returns that should be attributed to it. The existence of such protection is not, however, a necessary condition for an item to be characterised as an intangible for transfer pricing purposes. Similarly, while some intangibles may be identified separately and transferred on a segregated basis, other intangibles may be transferred only in combination with other business assets. Therefore, separate transferability is not a necessary condition for an item to be characterised as an intangible for transfer pricing purposes ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.7

Intangibles that are important to consider for transfer pricing purposes are not always recognised as intangible assets for accounting purposes. For example, costs associated with developing intangibles internally through expenditures such as research and development and advertising are sometimes expensed rather than capitalised for accounting purposes and the intangibles resulting from such expenditures therefore are not always reflected on the balance sheet. Such intangibles may nevertheless be used to generate significant economic value and may need to be considered for transfer pricing purposes. Furthermore, the enhancement to value that may arise from the complementary nature of a collection of intangibles when exploited together is not always reflected on the balance sheet. Accordingly, whether an item should be considered to be an intangible for transfer pricing purposes under Article 9 of the OECD Model Tax Convention can be informed by its characterisation for accounting purposes, but will not be determined by such characterisation only. Furthermore, the determination that an item should ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.6

In these Guidelines, therefore, the word “intangible” is intended to address something which is not a physical asset or a financial asset, which is capable of being owned or controlled for use in commercial activities, and whose use or transfer would be compensated had it occurred in a transaction between independent parties in comparable circumstances. Rather than focusing on accounting or legal definitions, the thrust of a transfer pricing analysis in a case involving intangibles should be the determination of the conditions that would be agreed upon between independent parties for a comparable transaction ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.5

Difficulties can arise in a transfer pricing analysis as a result of definitions of the term intangible that are either too narrow or too broad. If an overly narrow definition of the term intangible is applied, either taxpayers or governments may argue that certain items fall outside the definition and may therefore be transferred or used without separate compensation, even though such use or transfer would give rise to compensation in transactions between independent enterprises. If too broad a definition is applied, either taxpayers or governments may argue that the use or transfer of an item in transactions between associated enterprises should require compensation in circumstances where no such compensation would be provided in transactions between independent enterprises ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.95

A second and related issue involves the importance of ensuring that all intangibles transferred in a particular transaction have been identified. It may be the case, for example, that intangibles are so intertwined that it is not possible, as a substantive matter, to transfer one without transferring the other. Indeed, it will often be the case that a transfer of one intangible will necessarily imply the transfer of other intangibles. In such cases it is important to identify all of the intangibles made available to the transferee as a consequence of an intangibles transfer, applying the principles of Section D. 1 of Chapter I. For example, the transfer of rights to use a trademark under a licence agreement will usually also imply the licensing of the reputational value, sometimes referred to as goodwill, associated with that trademark, where it is the licensor who has built up such goodwill. Any licence fee required should consider both the trademark and the associated ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.31

Specific characteristics of a given market may affect the arm’s length conditions of transactions in that market. For example, the high purchasing power of households in a particular market may affect the prices paid for certain luxury consumer goods. Similarly, low prevailing labour costs, proximity to markets, favourable weather conditions and the like may affect the prices paid for specific goods and services in a particular market. Such market specific characteristics are not capable, however, of being owned or controlled, and are therefore not intangibles within the meaning of Section A. 1., and should be taken into account in a transfer pricing analysis through the required comparability analysis. See Section D.6 of Chapter I for guidance regarding the transfer pricing treatment of market specific characteristics ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.30

In some circumstances group synergies contribute to the level of income earned by an MNE group. Such group synergies can take many different forms including streamlined management, elimination of costly duplication of effort, integrated systems, purchasing or borrowing power, etc. Such features may have an effect on the determination of arm’s length conditions for controlled transactions and should be addressed for transfer pricing purposes as comparability factors. As they are not owned or controlled by an enterprise, they are not intangibles within the meaning of Section A. 1. See Section D.8 of Chapter I for a discussion of the transfer pricing treatment of group synergies ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.29

The requirement that goodwill and ongoing concern value be taken into account in pricing transactions in no way implies that the residual measures of goodwill derived for some specific accounting or business valuation purposes are necessarily appropriate measures of the price that would be paid for the transferred business or licence rights, together with their associated goodwill and ongoing concern value, by independent parties. Accounting and business valuation measures of goodwill and ongoing concern value do not, as a general rule, correspond to the arm’s length price of transferred goodwill or ongoing concern value in a transfer pricing analysis. Depending on the facts and circumstances, however, accounting valuations and the information supporting such valuations can provide a useful starting point in conducting a transfer pricing analysis. The absence of a single precise definition of goodwill makes it essential for taxpayers and tax administrations to describe specifically relevant intangibles in connection with a transfer pricing analysis, and to consider whether independent ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.28

It is not necessary for purposes of this chapter to establish a precise definition of goodwill or ongoing concern value for transfer pricing purposes or to define when goodwill or ongoing concern value may or may not constitute an intangible. It is important to recognise, however, that an important and monetarily significant part of the compensation paid between independent enterprises when some or all of the assets of an operating business are transferred may represent compensation for something referred to in one or another of the alternative descriptions of goodwill or ongoing concern value. When similar transactions occur between associated enterprises, such value should be taken into account in determining an arm’s length price for the transaction. When the reputational value sometimes referred to by the term goodwill is transferred to or shared with an associated enterprise in connection with a transfer or licence of a trademark or other intangible that reputational value should be taken into account in determining ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.27

Depending on the context, the term goodwill can be used to refer to a number of different concepts. In some accounting and business valuation contexts, goodwill reflects the difference between the aggregate value of an operating business and the sum of the values of all separately identifiable tangible and intangible assets. Alternatively, goodwill is sometimes described as a representation of the future economic benefits associated with business assets that are not individually identified and separately recognised. In still other contexts goodwill is referred to as the expectation of future trade from existing customers. The term ongoing concern value is sometimes referred to as the value of the assembled assets of an operating business over and above the sum of the separate values of the individual assets. It is generally recognised that goodwill and ongoing concern value cannot be segregated or transferred separately from other business assets. See paragraphs 9.68-9.70 for a discussion of the related notion of a transfer of ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.26

Limited rights in intangibles are commonly transferred by means of a licence or other similar contractual arrangement, whether written, oral or implied. Such licensed rights may be limited as to field of use, term of use, geography or in other ways. Such limited rights in intangibles are themselves intangibles within the meaning of Section A. 1 ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.25

Rights under contracts may also be important to a particular business and can cover a wide range of business relationships. They may include, among others, contracts with suppliers and key customers, and agreements to make available the services of one or more employees. Rights under contracts are intangibles within the meaning of Section A. 1 ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.24

Government licences and concessions may be important to a particular business and can cover a wide range of business relationships. They may include, among others, a government grant of rights to exploit specific natural resources or public goods (e.g. a licence of bandwidth spectrum), or to carry on a specific business activity. Government licences and concessions are intangibles within the meaning of Section A. 1. However, government licences and concessions should be distinguished from company registration obligations that are preconditions for doing business in a particular jurisdiction. Such obligations are not intangibles within the meaning of Section A. 1 ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.23

The term “brand” is sometimes used interchangeably with the terms “trademark” and “trade name.” In other contexts a brand is thought of as a trademark or trade name imbued with social and commercial significance. A brand may, in fact, represent a combination of intangibles and/or other items, including among others, trademarks, trade names, customer relationships, reputational characteristics, and goodwill. It may sometimes be difficult or impossible to segregate or separately transfer the various items contributing to brand value. A brand may consist of a single intangible, or a collection of intangibles, within the meaning of Section A. 1 ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.22

A trade name (often but not always the name of an enterprise) may have the same force of market penetration as a trademark and may indeed be registered in some specific form as a trademark. The trade names of certain MNEs may be readily recognised, and may be used in marketing a variety of goods and services. Trade names are intangibles within the meaning of Section A. 1 ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.21

A trademark is a unique name, symbol, logo or picture that the owner may use to distinguish its products and services from those of other entities. Proprietary rights in trademarks are often confirmed through a registration system. The registered owner of a trademark may exclude others from using the trademark in a manner that would create confusion in the marketplace. A trademark registration may continue indefinitely if the trademark is continuously used and the registration appropriately renewed. Trademarks may be established for goods or services, and may apply to a single product or service, or to a line of products or services. Trademarks are perhaps most familiar at the consumer market level, but they are likely to be encountered at all market levels. Trademarks are intangibles within the meaning of Section A. 1 ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.20

Know-how and trade secrets are proprietary information or knowledge that assist or improve a commercial activity, but that are not registered for protection in the manner of a patent or trademark. Know-how and trade secrets generally consist of undisclosed information of an industrial, commercial or scientific nature arising from previous experience, which has practical application in the operation of an enterprise. Know-how and trade secrets may relate to manufacturing, marketing, research and development, or any other commercial activity. The value of know-how and trade secrets is often dependent on the ability of the enterprise to preserve the confidentiality of the know-how or trade secret. In certain industries the disclosure of information necessary to obtain patent protection could assist competitors in developing alternative solutions. Accordingly, an enterprise may, for sound business reasons, choose not to register patentable know-how, which may nonetheless contribute substantially to the success of the enterprise. The confidential nature of know-how and trade secrets may be protected to ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.19

A patent is a legal instrument that grants an exclusive right to its owner to use a given invention for a limited period of time within a specific geography. A patent may relate to a physical object or to a process. Patentable inventions are often developed through risky and costly research and development activities. In some circumstances, however, small research and development expenditures can lead to highly valuable patentable inventions. The developer of a patent may try to recover its development costs (and earn a return) through the sale of products covered by the patent, by licensing others to use the patented invention, or by an outright sale of the patent. The exclusivity granted by a patent may, under some circumstances, allow the patent owner to earn premium returns from the use of its invention. In other cases, a patented invention may provide cost advantages to the owner that are not available to competitors. In still other situations, patents may ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.18

This section provides illustrations of items often considered in transfer pricing analyses involving intangibles. The illustrations are intended to clarify the provisions of Section A. 1., but this listing should not be used as a substitute for a detailed analysis. The illustrations are not intended to be comprehensive or to provide a complete listing of items that may or may not constitute intangibles. Numerous items not included in this listing of illustrations may be intangibles for transfer pricing purposes. The illustrations in this section should be adapted to the specific legal and regulatory environment that prevails in each country. Furthermore, the illustrations in this section should be considered and evaluated in the context of the comparability analysis (including the functional analysis) of the controlled transaction with the objective of better understanding how specific intangibles and items not treated as intangibles contribute to the creation of value in the context of the MNE’s global business. It should be emphasised that a ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.17

In certain instances these Guidelines refer to “unique and valuable” intangibles. “Unique and valuable” intangibles are those intangibles (i) that are not comparable to intangibles used by or available to parties to potentially comparable transactions, and (ii) whose use in business operations (e.g. manufacturing, provision of services, marketing, sales or administration) is expected to yield greater future economic benefits than would be expected in the absence of the intangible ... Read more