Tag: Unique and valuable contributions

Contributions (for instance functions performed, or assets used or contributed) will be unique and valuable in cases where (i) they are not comparable to contributions made by uncontrolled parties in comparable circumstances, and (ii) they represent a key source of actual or potential economic benefits in the business operations.

TPG2022 Chapter II Annex II example 8

TPG2022 Chapter II Annex II example 8

38. Company A is the parent company of M Group, an MNE group engaged in the manufacturing and distribution of electronic devices. Company A has the exclusive right to sell the devices in all territories. 39. Company A decides to subcontract the manufacturing of the electronic devices to Company B, another member of M Group. Under the terms of the contract, Company B will follow the directions of Company A to produce the devices. Company B will source and supply the materials necessary to produce the different parts of the final products. A key component in the manufacturing process is sourced from Company A. Company B sells the finished goods to Company A, which in turn will market and distribute the product to unrelated customers. 40. To perform the manufacturing activities, Company B has invested in machinery and tooling that is specifically adapted to the production of the electronic devices sold by M Group. Company B has no other customer ... Read more
TPG2022 Chapter II Annex II example 5

TPG2022 Chapter II Annex II example 5

20. WebCo is a member of an MNE group that develops IT solutions for business customers. Recently, WebCo designed the architecture of a web crawler to collect pricing data from internet sites. WebCo has written the code of the program so it is able to systematically scan web pages in a more efficient and faster way than any other similar search engines available in the market. 21. At this stage, WebCo licenses the program to ScaleCo, a company in the same MNE group. ScaleCo is responsible for scaling-up the web crawler and for deciding the crawling strategy. ScaleCo is a specialist in designing add-ons for the web crawler and in customising the product to address gaps in the market. Without these contributions, the system would not be able to meet potential customers’ needs. 22. Under the terms of the licence, WebCo will continue developing the underlying base technology and ScaleCo will use these developments to scale up the web crawler ... Read more
TPG2022 Chapter II Annex II example 3

TPG2022 Chapter II Annex II example 3

10. Company A and Company B are members of an MNE group that sells electronic appliances. For the launch of a new line of products, Company A will be responsible for its design, development and manufacturing whereas Company B will undertake the marketing functions and the global distribution of the goods. 11. In particular, Company A performs the research and development functions and decides on the lines of research and the timelines. For the manufacturing of the new line of products, Company A decides on the levels of production and performs the quality controls. In doing so, Company A uses its valuable know-how and expertise regarding the manufacturing of electronic appliances. 12. Once the products are manufactured, they are sold to Company B, which develops and executes cutting-edge global marketing activities relating to the new line of products. In particular, Company B is responsible for designing the marketing strategy, deciding on the level of marketing expenditure in each country where ... Read more
TPG2022 Chapter II Annex II example 2

TPG2022 Chapter II Annex II example 2

5. A Co, a member of T Group, is a company incorporated in Country A whose principal activity is the growing and processing of tea. A Co identifies, acquires and cultivates land with extremely good soil for growing tea. A Co has developed extensive know- how in respect of tea-growing, including maximising the desirable qualities of the tea it grows through its cultivation methods. The properties of the soil together with the cultivation methods give A Co’s tea a highly sought after flavour. 6. A Co processes tea by undertaking the following activities: sorting leaf, grading, full or partial fermenting, and blending and packaging for export as per customer order specifications. Blending entails using extensive proprietary know-how to mix the various teas in order to get blends with the unique tastes appreciated by customers of T Group. Tea produced by A Co has won international acclaim for its unique taste and aroma. 7. A Co sells its tea to B ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.127

Each of the foregoing comparability considerations has a consequence with regard to the expectation of the parties to a transaction regarding the future benefits to be derived from the use of the intangibles in question. If for any reason there is a significant discrepancy between the anticipated future benefit of using one intangible as opposed to another, it is difficult to consider the intangibles as being sufficiently comparable to support a comparables-based transfer pricing analysis in the absence of reliable comparability adjustments. Specifically, it is important to consider the actual and potential profitability of products or potential products that are based on the intangible. Intangibles that provide a basis for high profit products or services are not likely to be comparable to intangibles that support products or services with only industry average profits. Any factor materially affecting the expectation of the parties to a controlled transaction of obtaining future benefits from the intangible should be taken into account in conducting ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.126

A very similar question, often important in a comparability analysis, involves whether the transferee of intangibles obtains the right to use the intangibles in connection with research directed to developing new and enhanced intangibles. For example, the right to use an existing software platform as a basis for developing new software products can shorten development times and can make the difference between being the first to market with a new product or application, or being forced to enter a market already occupied by established competitive products. A comparability analysis with regard to intangibles should, therefore, consider the rights of the parties regarding the use of the intangibles in developing new and enhanced versions of products ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.125

Often, an important consideration in a comparability analysis involving intangibles relates to the rights of the parties with regard to future enhancements, revisions and updates of the intangibles. In some industries, products protected by intangibles can become obsolete or uncompetitive in a relatively short period of time in the absence of continuing development and enhancement of the intangibles. As a result, having access to updates and enhancements can be the difference between deriving a short term advantage from the intangibles and deriving a longer term advantage. It is therefore necessary to consider for comparability purposes whether or not a particular grant of rights in intangibles includes access to enhancements, revisions, and updates of the intangibles ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.124

As a general rule, intangibles relating to products with established commercial viability will be more valuable than otherwise comparable intangibles relating to products whose commercial viability is yet to be established. In conducting a comparability analysis involving partially developed intangibles, it is important to evaluate the likelihood that further development will lead to commercially significant future benefits. In certain circumstances, industry data regarding the risks associated with further development can be helpful to such evaluations. However, the specific circumstances of any individual situation should always be considered ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.123

In conducting a comparability analysis, it may be important to consider the stage of development of particular intangibles. It is often the case that an intangible is transferred in a controlled transaction at a point in time before it has been fully demonstrated that the intangible will support commercially viable products. A common example arises in the pharmaceutical industry, where chemical compounds may be patented, and the patents (or rights to use the patents) transferred in controlled transactions, well in advance of the time when further research, development and testing demonstrates that the compound constitutes a safe and effective treatment for a particular medical condition ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.122

In conducting a comparability analysis, it will therefore be important to consider the expected useful life of the intangibles in question. In general, intangibles expected to provide market advantages for a longer period of time will be more valuable than similar intangibles providing such advantages for a shorter period of time, other things being equal. In evaluating the useful life of intangibles it is also important to consider the use being made of the intangible. The useful life of an intangible that forms a base for ongoing research and development may extend beyond the commercial life of the current generation product line based on that intangible ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.121

Many intangibles have a limited useful life. The useful life of a particular intangible can be affected by the nature and duration of the legal protections afforded to the intangible, as noted above. The useful life of some intangibles can also be affected by the rate of technological change in an industry and by the development of new and potentially improved products. It may also be the case that the useful life of particular intangibles can be extended ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.120

The geographic scope of the intangibles or rights in intangibles will be an important comparability consideration. A global grant of rights to intangibles may be more valuable than a grant limited to one or a few countries, depending on the nature of the product, the nature of the intangible, and the nature of the markets in question ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.119

The extent and duration of legal protection of the intangibles relevant to a particular transfer can be an important comparability consideration. Legal protections associated with some intangibles can prevent competitors from entering a particular market. For other intangibles, such as know-how or trade secrets, available legal protections may have a different nature and not be as strong or last as long. For intangibles with limited useful lives, the duration of legal protections can be important since the duration of the intangible rights will affect the expectation of the parties to a transaction with regard to the future benefits from the exploitation of the intangible. For example, two otherwise comparable patents will not have equivalent value if one expires at the end of one year while the other expires only after ten years ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.118

Whether the rights in intangibles relevant to a particular transaction involving the transfer of intangibles or rights in intangibles are exclusive or non-exclusive can be an important comparability consideration. Some intangibles allow the legal owner of the intangible to exclude others from using the intangible. A patent, for example, grants an exclusive right to use the invention covered by the patent for a period of years. If the party controlling intangible rights can exclude other enterprises from the market, or exclude them from using intangibles that provide a market advantage, that party may enjoy a high degree of market power or market influence. A party with non-exclusive rights to intangibles will not be able to exclude all competitors and will generally not have the same degree of market power or influence. Accordingly, the exclusive or non-exclusive nature of intangibles or rights in intangibles should be considered in connection with the comparability analysis ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.117

Set out below is a description of some of the specific features of intangibles that may prove important in a comparability analysis involving transfers of intangibles or rights in intangibles. The following list is not exhaustive and in a specific case consideration of additional or different factors may be an essential part of a comparability analysis ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.116

In applying the provisions of Chapters I – III to transactions involving the transfer of intangibles or rights in intangibles, it should be borne in mind that intangibles often have unique characteristics, and as a result have the potential for generating returns and creating future benefits that could differ widely. In conducting a comparability analysis with regard to a transfer of intangibles, it is therefore essential to consider the unique features of the intangibles. This is particularly important where the CUP method is considered to be the most appropriate transfer pricing method, but also has importance in applying other methods that rely on comparables. In the case of a transfer of an intangible or rights in an intangible that provides the enterprise with a unique competitive advantage in the market, purportedly comparable intangibles or transactions should be carefully scrutinised. It is critical to assess whether potential comparables in fact exhibit similar profit potential ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.79

The principles set out in the foregoing paragraphs also apply in situations involving the performance of research and development functions by a member of an MNE group under a contractual arrangement with an associated enterprise that is the legal owner of any resulting intangibles. Appropriate compensation for research services will depend on all the facts and circumstances, such as whether the research team possesses unique skills and experience relevant to the research, assumes risks (e.g. where “blue sky” research is undertaken), uses its own intangibles, or is controlled and managed by another party. Compensation based on a reimbursement of costs plus a modest mark-up will not reflect the anticipated value of, or the arm’s length price for, the contributions of the research team in all cases ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter II paragraph 2.180

Where one or more of the parties to a transaction for which the transactional profit split method is found to be the most appropriate makes a contribution in the form of intangibles, difficult issues can arise in relation both to their identification and to their valuation. Guidance on the identification and valuation of intangibles is found at Chapter VI of these Guidelines. See also the examples in Annex I to Chapter VI “Examples to illustrate the guidance on intangibles.” ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter II paragraph 2.178

Internal data are essential to assess the values of the respective contributions of the parties to the controlled transaction. The determination of such values should rely on a functional analysis that takes into account all the economically significant functions, assets and risks contributed by the parties to the controlled transaction. In those cases where the profit is split on the basis of an evaluation of the relative importance of the functions, assets and risks to the value added to the controlled transaction, such evaluation should be supported by reliable objective data in order to limit arbitrariness. Particular attention should be given to the identification of the relevant contributions of unique and valuable intangibles and the assumption of economically significant risks and the importance, relevance and measurement of the factors which gave rise to these ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter II paragraph 2.164

For example, two associated enterprises, each with its own manufacturing specialisation and unique and valuable intangibles, agree to contribute the intangibles to produce innovative, complex products. The accurate delineation of the transaction determines that the enterprises in this example share the assumption of risks associated with the success or otherwise of the products in the marketplace. However, they do not share the assumption of risks associated with their selling and other expenses, which are largely unintegrated. Using a profit split based on combined operating profits after all expenses of both parties would have the potential result of sharing the consequences of risks that are assumed by only one of the parties. In such cases, a splitting of gross profits may be more appropriate and reliable since this level of profits captures the outcomes of market and production activities that the parties share together with the assumption of associated risks. Similarly, in the case of associated enterprises that engage in highly ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter II paragraph 2.138

Where the contributions are highly inter-related or inter-dependent upon each other, the evaluation of the respective contributions of the parties may need to be done holistically. That is, a high degree of integration may also affect whether contributions by the enterprises are considered to be unique and valuable. For instance, a unique contribution by one party may have a significantly greater value when considered in combination with the particular unique contribution of the other party. Paragraphs 6.93-6.94 discuss this issue in relation to the combination of intangibles. See also Example 9 in Annex II to Chapter II ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter II paragraph 2.130

Contributions (for instance functions performed, or assets used or contributed) will be “unique and valuable” in cases where (i) they are not comparable to contributions made by uncontrolled parties in comparable circumstances, and (ii) they represent a key source of actual or potential economic benefits in the business operations. The two factors are often linked: comparables for such contributions are seldom found because they are a key source of economic advantage. It may be the case that in these situations, the risks associated with the respective unique and valuable contributions cannot be controlled by the other party or parties. This may impact the assumption of risk under the accurate delineation of the actual transaction. For example, the developer and manufacturer of a key component of a product together with the developer and manufacturer of another key component that together with the first component, form the ready-to-sell product, may both make unique and valuable contributions in terms of functions and intangibles ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter II paragraph 2.126

The existence of unique and valuable contributions by each party to the controlled transaction is perhaps the clearest indicator that a transactional profit split may be appropriate. The context of the transaction, including the industry in which it occurs and the factors affecting business performance in that sector can be particularly relevant to evaluating the contributions of the parties and whether such contributions are unique and valuable. Depending on the facts of the case, other indicators that the transactional profit split may be the most appropriate method could include a high level of integration in the business operations to which the transactions relate and /or the shared assumption of economically significant risks (or the separate assumption of closely related economically significant risks) by the parties to the trans- actions. It is important to note that the indicators are not mutually exclusive and on the contrary may often be found together in a single case ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter II paragraph 2.119

The main strength of the transactional profit split method is that it can offer a solution for cases where both parties to a transaction make unique and valuable contributions (e.g. contribute unique and valuable intangibles) to the transaction. In such a case independent parties might effectively price the transaction in proportion to their respective contributions, making a two-sided method more appropriate. Furthermore, since those contributions are unique and valuable there will be no reliable comparables information which could be used to price the entirety of the transaction in a more reliable way, through the application of another method. In such cases, the allocation of profits under the transactional profit split method may be based on the contributions made by the associated enterprises, by reference to the relative values of their respective functions, assets and risks. See Section C.2.2 below on the nature of the transaction ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter II paragraph 2.65

A transactional net margin method is unlikely to be reliable if each party to a transaction makes unique and valuable contributions, see paragraph 2.4. In such a case, a transactional profit split method will generally be the most appropriate method, see paragraph 2.119. However, a one-sided method (traditional transaction method or transactional net margin method) may be applicable in cases where one of the parties makes all the unique and valuable contributions involved in the controlled transaction, while the other party does not make any unique and valuable contribution. In such a case, the tested party should be the less complex one. See paragraphs 3.18-3.19 for a discussion of the notion of tested party ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter II paragraph 2.4

There are situations where transactional profit methods are found to be more appropriate than traditional transaction methods. For example, cases where each of the parties makes unique and valuable contributions in relation to the controlled transaction, or where the parties engage in highly integrated activities, may make a transactional profit split more appropriate than a one-sided method. As another example, where there is no or limited publicly available reliable gross margin information on third parties, traditional transaction methods might be difficult to apply in cases other than those where there are internal comparables, and a transactional profit method might be the most appropriate method in view of the availability of information ... Read more
India vs Toyota Kirloskar Auto Parts Private Limited, March 2020, Income Tax Appellate Tribunal - BANGALORE, Case No IT(TP) No.1915/Bang/2017 & 3377/Bang/2018

India vs Toyota Kirloskar Auto Parts Private Limited, March 2020, Income Tax Appellate Tribunal – BANGALORE, Case No IT(TP) No.1915/Bang/2017 & 3377/Bang/2018

Toyota Kirloskar Auto Parts Private Limited manufactures auto parts and sold them to Toyota Kirloskar Motors Limited, another Indian corporation in the Toyota Group. In FY 2013-14 Toyota Kirloskar Auto Parts Private Limited paid a 5% royalty to the Japanese parent Toyota Motor Corporation for use of know-how. The royalty rate had been determined by application of the TNMM method. The Indian tax authorities did not agree with the choice of method and argued that the most appropriate method was the Profit Split Method (PSM). Judgement of the Tax Appellate Tribunal The Tribunal decided in favor of Toyota Kirloskar Auto Parts and set aside the assessment. Excerpt “17. It is clear from the above OECD guidelines that in ‘order to determine the profits to be split, the crux is to understand the functional profile of the entities under consideration. Although the comparability analysis is at the “heart of the application of the arm’s length principle”, likewise, a functional analysis has always ... Read more

THE APPLICATION OF THE PROFIT SPLIT METHOD WITHIN THE EU (2019)

This paper addresses the first stage and aims at clarifying certain concepts in applying the PSM: (i) when to use the PSM (i.e. in which circumstances it may be considered the most appropriate transfer pricing method) and (ii) how to split the profit based on the concepts described in the revised OECD Guidelines as well as by providing an inventory of recurrent splitting factors. For the avoidance of doubt this report should be regarded as complementary to, and supportive of, the text of the OECD Revised Guidelines on the application of the Transactional Profit Split Method issued in June 2018. The paper is structured as follows: section 2 provides a short description of the profit split method; section 3 seeks to clarify some key concepts related to the use of the profit split method also touching upon some challenging points; and section 4 describes a number of potential splitting factors listed in the Annex ... Read more
TPG2017 Chapter II Annex II example 8

TPG2017 Chapter II Annex II example 8

38. Company A is the parent company of M Group, an MNE group engaged in the manufacturing and distribution of electronic devices. Company A has the exclusive right to sell the devices in all territories. 39. Company A decides to subcontract the manufacturing of the electronic devices to Company B, another member of M Group. Under the terms of the contract, Company B will follow the directions of Company A to produce the devices. Company B will source and supply the materials necessary to produce the different parts of the final products. A key component in the manufacturing process is sourced from Company A. Company B sells the finished goods to Company A, which in turn will market and distribute the product to unrelated customers. 40. To perform the manufacturing activities, Company B has invested in machinery and tooling that is specifically adapted to the production of the electronic devices sold by M Group. Company B has no other customer ... Read more
TPG2017 Chapter II Annex II example 5

TPG2017 Chapter II Annex II example 5

20. WebCo is a member of an MNE group that develops IT solutions for business customers. Recently, WebCo designed the architecture of a web crawler to collect pricing data from internet sites. WebCo has written the code of the program so it is able to systematically scan web pages in a more efficient and faster way than any other similar search engines available in the market. 21. At this stage, WebCo licenses the program to ScaleCo, a company in the same MNE group. ScaleCo is responsible for scaling-up the web crawler and for deciding the crawling strategy. ScaleCo is a specialist in designing add-ons for the web crawler and in customising the product to address gaps in the market. Without these contributions, the system would not be able to meet potential customers’ needs. 22. Under the terms of the licence, WebCo will continue developing the underlying base technology and ScaleCo will use these developments to scale up the web crawler ... Read more
TPG2017 Chapter II Annex II example 3

TPG2017 Chapter II Annex II example 3

10. Company A and Company B are members of an MNE group that sells electronic appliances. For the launch of a new line of products, Company A will be responsible for its design, development and manufacturing whereas Company B will undertake the marketing functions and the global distribution of the goods. 11. In particular, Company A performs the research and development functions and decides on the lines of research and the timelines. For the manufacturing of the new line of products, Company A decides on the levels of production and performs the quality controls. In doing so, Company A uses its valuable know-how and expertise regarding the manufacturing of electronic appliances. 12. Once the products are manufactured, they are sold to Company B, which develops and executes cutting-edge global marketing activities relating to the new line of products. In particular, Company B is responsible for designing the marketing strategy, deciding on the level of marketing expenditure in each country where ... Read more
TPG2017 Chapter II Annex II example 2

TPG2017 Chapter II Annex II example 2

5. A Co, a member of T Group, is a company incorporated in Country A whose principal activity is the growing and processing of tea. A Co identifies, acquires and cultivates land with extremely good soil for growing tea. A Co has developed extensive know- how in respect of tea-growing, including maximising the desirable qualities of the tea it grows through its cultivation methods. The properties of the soil together with the cultivation methods give A Co’s tea a highly sought after flavour. 6. A Co processes tea by undertaking the following activities: sorting leaf, grading, full or partial fermenting, and blending and packaging for export as per customer order specifications. Blending entails using extensive proprietary know-how to mix the various teas in order to get blends with the unique tastes appreciated by customers of T Group. Tea produced by A Co has won international acclaim for its unique taste and aroma. 7. A Co sells its tea to B ... Read more

TPG2018 Chapter II paragraph 2.178

Internal data are essential to assess the values of the respective contributions of the parties to the controlled transaction. The determination of such values should rely on a functional analysis that takes into account all the economically significant functions, assets and risks contributed by the parties to the controlled transaction. In those cases where the profit is split on the basis of an evaluation of the relative importance of the functions, assets and risks to the value added to the controlled transaction, such evaluation should be supported by reliable objective data in order to limit arbitrariness. Particular attention should be given to the identification of the relevant contributions of unique and valuable intangibles and the assumption of economically significant risks and the importance, relevance and measurement of the factors which gave rise to these ... Read more

TPG2018 Chapter II paragraph 2.164

For example, two associated enterprises, each with its own manufacturing specialisation and unique and valuable intangibles, agree to contribute the intangibles to produce innovative, complex products. The accurate delineation of the transaction determines that the enterprises in this example share the assumption of risks associated with the success or otherwise of the products in the marketplace. However, they do not share the assumption of risks associated with their selling and other expenses, which are largely unintegrated. Using a profit split based on combined operating profits after all expenses of both parties would have the potential result of sharing the consequences of risks that are assumed by only one of the parties. In such cases, a splitting of gross profits may be more appropriate and reliable since this level of profits captures the outcomes of market and production activities that the parties share together with the assumption of associated risks. Similarly, in the case of associated enterprises that engage in highly ... Read more

TPG2018 Chapter II paragraph 2.138

Where the contributions are highly inter-related or inter-dependent upon each other, the evaluation of the respective contributions of the parties may need to be done holistically. That is, a high degree of integration may also affect whether contributions by the enterprises are considered to be unique and valuable. For instance, a unique contribution by one party may have a significantly greater value when considered in combination with the particular unique contribution of the other party. Paragraphs 6.93–6.94 discuss this issue in relation to the combination of intangibles. See also Example 9 in Annex II to Chapter II ... Read more

TPG2018 Chapter II paragraph 2.130

Contributions (for instance functions performed, or assets used or contributed) will be “unique and valuable” in cases where (i) they are not comparable to contributions made by uncontrolled parties in comparable circumstances, and (ii) they represent a key source of actual or potential economic benefits in the business operations. The two factors are often linked: comparables for such contributions are seldom found because they are a key source of economic advantage. It may be the case that in these situations, the risks associated with the respective unique and valuable contributions cannot be controlled by the other party or parties. This may impact the assumption of risk under the accurate delineation of the actual transaction. For example, the developer and manufacturer of a key component of a product together with the developer and manufacturer of another key component that together with the first component, form the ready-to-sell product, may both make unique and valuable contributions in terms of functions and intangibles ... Read more

TPG2018 Chapter II paragraph 2.126

The existence of unique and valuable contributions by each party to the controlled transaction is perhaps the clearest indicator that a transactional profit split may be appropriate. The context of the transaction, including the industry in which it occurs and the factors affecting business performance in that sector can be particularly relevant to evaluating the contributions of the parties and whether such contributions are unique and valuable. Depending on the facts of the case, other indicators that the transactional profit split may be the most appropriate method could include a high level of integration in the business operations to which the transactions relate and /or the shared assumption of economically significant risks (or the separate assumption of closely related economically significant risks) by the parties to the transactions. It is important to note that the indicators are not mutually exclusive and on the contrary may often be found together in a single case ... Read more

TPG2018 Chapter II paragraph 2.119

The main strength of the transactional profit split method is that it can offer a solution for cases where both parties to a transaction make unique and valuable contributions (e.g. contribute unique and valuable intangibles) to the transaction. In such a case independent parties might effectively price the transaction in proportion to their respective contributions, making a two-sided method more appropriate. Furthermore, since those contributions are unique and valuable there will be no reliable comparables information which could be used to price the entirety of the transaction in a more reliable way, through the application of another method. In such cases, the allocation of profits under the transactional profit split method may be based on the contributions made by the associated enterprises, by reference to the relative values of their respective functions, assets and risks. See section C.2.2 below on the nature of the transaction ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.127

Each of the foregoing comparability considerations has a consequence with regard to the expectation of the parties to a transaction regarding the future benefits to be derived from the use of the intangibles in question. If for any reason there is a significant discrepancy between the anticipated future benefit of using one intangible as opposed to another, it is difficult to consider the intangibles as being sufficiently comparable to support a comparables-based transfer pricing analysis in the absence of reliable comparability adjustments. Specifically, it is important to consider the actual and potential profitability of products or potential products that are based on the intangible. Intangibles that provide a basis for high profit products or services are not likely to be comparable to intangibles that support products or services with only industry average profits. Any factor materially affecting the expectation of the parties to a controlled transaction of obtaining future benefits from the intangible should be taken into account in conducting ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.126

A very similar question, often important in a comparability analysis, involves whether the transferee of intangibles obtains the right to use the intangibles in connection with research directed to developing new and enhanced intangibles. For example, the right to use an existing software platform as a basis for developing new software products can shorten development times and can make the difference between being the first to market with a new product or application, or being forced to enter a market already occupied by established competitive products. A comparability analysis with regard to intangibles should, therefore, consider the rights of the parties regarding the use of the intangibles in developing new and enhanced versions of products ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.125

Often, an important consideration in a comparability analysis involving intangibles relates to the rights of the parties with regard to future enhancements, revisions and updates of the intangibles. In some industries, products protected by intangibles can become obsolete or uncompetitive in a relatively short period of time in the absence of continuing development and enhancement of the intangibles. As a result, having access to updates and enhancements can be the difference between deriving a short term advantage from the intangibles and deriving a longer term advantage. It is therefore necessary to consider for comparability purposes whether or not a particular grant of rights in intangibles includes access to enhancements, revisions, and updates of the intangibles ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.124

As a general rule, intangibles relating to products with established commercial viability will be more valuable than otherwise comparable intangibles relating to products whose commercial viability is yet to be established. In conducting a comparability analysis involving partially developed intangibles, it is important to evaluate the likelihood that further development will lead to commercially significant future benefits. In certain circumstances, industry data regarding the risks associated with further development can be helpful to such evaluations. However, the specific circumstances of any individual situation should always be considered ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.123

In conducting a comparability analysis, it may be important to consider the stage of development of particular intangibles. It is often the case that an intangible is transferred in a controlled transaction at a point in time before it has been fully demonstrated that the intangible will support commercially viable products. A common example arises in the pharmaceutical industry, where chemical compounds may be patented, and the patents (or rights to use the patents) transferred in controlled transactions, well in advance of the time when further research, development and testing demonstrates that the compound constitutes a safe and effective treatment for a particular medical condition ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.122

In conducting a comparability analysis, it will therefore be important to consider the expected useful life of the intangibles in question. In general, intangibles expected to provide market advantages for a longer period of time will be more valuable than similar intangibles providing such advantages for a shorter period of time, other things being equal. In evaluating the useful life of intangibles it is also important to consider the use being made of the intangible. The useful life of an intangible that forms a base for ongoing research and development may extend beyond the commercial life of the current generation product line based on that intangible ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.121

Many intangibles have a limited useful life. The useful life of a particular intangible can be affected by the nature and duration of the legal protections afforded to the intangible, as noted above. The useful life of some intangibles can also be affected by the rate of technological change in an industry and by the development of new and potentially improved products. It may also be the case that the useful life of particular intangibles can be extended ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.120

The geographic scope of the intangibles or rights in intangibles will be an important comparability consideration. A global grant of rights to intangibles may be more valuable than a grant limited to one or a few countries, depending on the nature of the product, the nature of the intangible, and the nature of the markets in question ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.119

The extent and duration of legal protection of the intangibles relevant to a particular transfer can be an important comparability consideration. Legal protections associated with some intangibles can prevent competitors from entering a particular market. For other intangibles, such as know-how or trade secrets, available legal protections may have a different nature and not be as strong or last as long. For intangibles with limited useful lives, the duration of legal protections can be important since the duration of the intangible rights will affect the expectation of the parties to a transaction with regard to the future benefits from the exploitation of the intangible. For example, two otherwise comparable patents will not have equivalent value if one expires at the end of one year while the other expires only after ten years ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.118

Whether the rights in intangibles relevant to a particular transaction involving the transfer of intangibles or rights in intangibles are exclusive or non-exclusive can be an important comparability consideration. Some intangibles allow the legal owner of the intangible to exclude others from using the intangible. A patent, for example, grants an exclusive right to use the invention covered by the patent for a period of years. If the party controlling intangible rights can exclude other enterprises from the market, or exclude them from using intangibles that provide a market advantage, that party may enjoy a high degree of market power or market influence. A party with non-exclusive rights to intangibles will not be able to exclude all competitors and will generally not have the same degree of market power or influence. Accordingly, the exclusive or non-exclusive nature of intangibles or rights in intangibles should be considered in connection with the comparability analysis ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.117

Set out below is a description of some of the specific features of intangibles that may prove important in a comparability analysis involving transfers of intangibles or rights in intangibles. The following list is not exhaustive and in a specific case consideration of additional or different factors may be an essential part of a comparability analysis ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter VI paragraph 6.116

In applying the provisions of Chapters I – III to transactions involving the transfer of intangibles or rights in intangibles, it should be borne in mind that intangibles often have unique characteristics, and as a result have the potential for generating returns and creating future benefits that could differ widely. In conducting a comparability analysis with regard to a transfer of intangibles, it is therefore essential to consider the unique features of the intangibles. This is particularly important where the CUP method is considered to be the most appropriate transfer pricing method, but also has importance in applying other methods that rely on comparables. In the case of a transfer of an intangible or rights in an intangible that provides the enterprise with a unique competitive advantage in the market, purportedly comparable intangibles or transactions should be carefully scrutinised. It is critical to assess whether potential comparables in fact exhibit similar profit potential ... Read more