101. Company A is the Parent company of an MNE group with operations in country S. Company B is a member of the MNE group with operations in country T, and Company C is also a member of the MNE group with operations in country U. For valid business reasons the MNE group decides to centralise all of its intangibles related to business conducted outside of country S in a single location. Accordingly, intangibles owned by Company B are sold to Company C for a lump sum, including patents, trademarks, know-how, and customer relationships. At the same time, Company C retains Company B to act as a contract manufacturer of products previously produced and sold by Company B on a full-risk basis. Company C has the personnel and resources required to manage the acquired lines of business, including the further development of intangibles necessary to the Company B business.
102. The MNE group is unable to identify comparable uncontrolled transactions that can be used in a transfer pricing analysis of the arm’s length price to be paid by Company C to Company B. Based on a detailed comparability and functional analysis, the MNE group concludes that the most appropriate transfer pricing method involves the application of valuation techniques to determine the value of the transferred intangibles. In conducting its valuation, the MNE group is unable to reliably segregate particular cash flows associated with all of the specific intangibles.
103. Under these circumstances, in determining the arm’s length compensation to be paid by Company C for the intangibles sold by Company B, it may be appropriate to value the transferred intangibles in the aggregate rather than to attempt a valuation on an asset by asset basis. This would particularly be the case if there is a significant difference between the sum of the best available estimates of the value of individually identified intangibles and other assets when valued separately and the value of the business as a whole.