Famed Grand Theft Auto and Red Dead Redemption developer Rockstar has found itself courting intense controversy yet again due to a damning new report.
According to TaxWatch UK’s latest findings, the company, which is based primarily in Edinburgh, Scotland, claimed a massive £37.6m in Video Games Tax Relief during the 2018/19 financial year, accounting for 37% of all claims made during the 12 month period by the entire UK games industry. Why the ruckus, you ask? Well, the outrage primarily stems from the fact that since launch back in 2013, Grand Theft Auto V has generated more than $6 billion in total sales.
That eye-watering figure not only led to GTA V being crowned the top-selling title of the decade just gone but the most successful entertainment product of all time. Backed by impressive statistics such as those, it’s hardly surprising that Rockstar’s insistence on being afforded tax relief has been branded insulting. In essence, confirmation of this particular claim means Rockstar hasn’t paid Corporation Tax for four years on the trot.
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Questionable business ethics and calls for reform aside, however, one interesting result of the findings appear to confirm that Grand Theft Auto 6 is well and truly in active development.
According to TaxWatch, this latest claim relates to production of the “next edition of GTA,” as the studio isn’t noted as registering any other IP as being ‘Culturally British.’ Only those labelled as such are applicable to be considered for the UK government’s tax relief scheme, the last of which to be registered as such, at least in Rockstar’s case, being none other than GTA V.
Yet another PR nightmare for one of the world’s most well-established video game developers, then, and one that it will undoubtedly want to do without if the rumors of next month’s Grand Theft Auto 6 are to be believed. See here for the full story.
Source: TaxWatch UK