Aegis Defense has established holding company in Switzerand

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by viceroy, Aug 10, 2010.

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  1. First the hedge funds, now the defence contractors, an obvious move to save on tax and avoid regulation. The Swiss politians promplty demand regulation similar to the UK which might be the main reason for the move in the first place. Aegis cites proximity to ICRC and the UN as reasons for their move, but both these organisations are in Geneva. Aegis is run by ret Lt Col Timothy Spicer, anyone? I guess only the older semester will remember the Scots Guards incident in NI...

    Security firm Aegis Defence Services revealed to have Swiss holding - swissinfo

    Security firm revealed to have Swiss holding

    One of the world’s largest private security contractors has set up a Swiss holding company, according to the Basler Zeitung newspaper.
    Aegis Defence Services employs an estimated 20,000 soldiers, mostly in Iraq and Afghanistan. Many of them are on contract to the United States’ defence department.

    The London-based company, led by a former British army officer, is now wholly owned by the holding company in Basel, the newspaper reported on Monday. This effectively moves the firm’s headquarters to Switzerland.

    The newspaper cited confidential documents in its report.

    A statement sent by a public relations company acting on behalf of Aegis, quoted on the AP news agency, confirmed the move but added that "no business activities will be conducted in or from Switzerland".

    It said the decision was partly taken because of Switzerland's "geographic location, accounting transparency and stable system of taxation", as well as the presence of international organisations such as the International Committee of the Red Cross, which has worked to regulate the private security industry.

    Founded in 2002, Aegis was awarded one of the biggest US security contracts in Iraq valued at more than $430 million (SFr447 million).

    In 2000 controversy involving the firm erupted after some Aegis employees posted videos on the internet showing company guards firing automatic weapons at civilians from the back of a moving security vehicle.

    Aegis claimed the shootings were legal and within rules established by the now-defunct Coalition Provisional Authority. US Army auditors, in their own investigation, agreed with Aegis.
  2. Really? I'm sure some governments might have few things to say about that
  3. I was in the Scots Guards, care to elaborate coz I don't know WTF you are on about?
  4. I'm perfectly aware of what Tim Spicer has been up to and quite frankly couldn't give a damn. You referred to 'the Scots Guards incident in NI.' Could you please explain what incident and how Spicer was involved ???
  5. Viceroy, drop the crack pipe and explain your mongness.........
  6. As highlighted by muzzleflash, Aegis doesn't employ soldiers. They employ Private Security Contractors
  7. McBride murder?
  8. Yeah, that was Wright and Fisher. All Spicer did was give them 'moral support' as any good Commanding Officer would.
  9. Agreed, don't see what the point is or what the fuss is about on that one. They were fairly Tried and convicted, paid their dues and moved on.
  10. Exactly, I can't work out the snidey dig at Spicer, though admittedly I couldn't stand him.

    How this incident involves him or proves he has had murky, shady dealings even as a serving soldier, is a bit beyond me


  11. It's the fallout of 13 years of New Labour spin and "Off the record Guilt by association" Briefings......;-)
  12. Anyone worked for Aegis in Iraq? Does anyone know if being a 'consultant' you are employed by aegis or self-employed?
  13. Depends on your role. As with most PSCs, many companies will offer you a contract with a subsidiary comapny, often registered offshore. The contract, which will probably be signed in London offices, is with a company with a very similar name outside of UK. This enables tax free wages and no NI contributions. It also means you (employee) and company are bound by the employment and legal system of the country in which the company is registered.

    For instance - you sign for ABCD PSC in London. But the contract is drawn up by a firm of solicitors in, lets say, Guernsey. All entirely legal and allows you (employee) to take advantage of tax and NI breaks. But, a week after you start work, the company decides you are not quite right for them. You are out of a job, that day, no severance pay and a flight home.

    You feel unfairly treated, speak to a lawyer and discover that in order to sue anyone you have to sue the Guernsey registered firm. The law in that country does not provide for legal aid and you MUST be represented by a Guernsey recognised solicitor. They cost a bomb. Furthermore, many aspects of Guernsey law only apply IN GUERNSEY - so being laid off in iraq is not really in their jurisdiction. You have no realistic chance of getting a result, so walk away. Your mate is hired the same day, for less than you were on.

    As I said, the up side is tax free wages and no NI contribution. Down side reduced protection. All entirely legal and above board. Think ship owners registering ships in Panama not London - less taxes, lower legislative standards, more profit.

    You pays your money. If you work for Aegis in London, you will likely be an Aegis Ltd employee. Abroad, you almost certainly won't.
  14. Thanks for the detailed response.
    Am heading out just now but will have a PM inbound at some point over the weekend!