Welcome to The Chaser Quarterly, the latest tax-loss making venture from the people who brought you such successful tax losses as “The Chaser Newspaper”, “CNNNN” and “The Chaser’s War on Everything”.
Ever since The Chaser started, back in 1999, we have strived to build our company on a solid foundation of inexplicable and highly technical tax losses that form the bedrock of modern corporate life.
If Apple barely scrapes by in Australia – paying $12 million of tax on revenues of $7 billion, if Google Australia comes across as essentially broke, and if Chevron gets tax refund cheques even while selling off $25 billion of Australia’s own gas then it’s time that the other trusted household name – The Chaser – should become a member of this corporate club of luxurious penury.
Although this is only the first edition of The Chaser Quarterly, it would be silly if we didn’t already have one eye on a stock market listing in the coming months, followed by an almost immediate delisting to take the company private again through a leveraged management buyout, funded by private equity. According to our bankers, this is a great way to unlock the wealth in our company. I believe them, given the size of their art collections, our bankers seem to be brilliant at unlocking wealth in all sorts of different companies.
Indeed, these bankers tell us that a dual market listing between Shanghai’s Chi-X and New York’s NASDAQ is not as absurd as it sounds for a company that currently has no revenue, and whose prospects are entirely based on modelling that has, as its key assumption, that all seven billion people on earth have the same spending habits as 25-34 year old males from Palo Alto, California.
After all, the Chaser Quarterly has just started up, and therefore can rightly be dubbed a “start-up”. And it’s important to distinguish a “start-up” from a boring old “standard” business that does things like take in more revenue than the cost of generating it, and therefore turn, (what old school capitalists such as Henry Ford used to call) a “profit”.
The Chaser: A natural disrupter
A start-up is about disruption and there is nothing that The Chaser does better than disruption. Sure, in the past this has generally involved disrupting those in power, by confronting politicians and corporate figures in the street, but most of all, disrupting the reception areas of those in power.
Business models might seem a slightly less glamorous thing to disrupt. But what could be more subversive than sidling up to capitalism and adopting it wholesale, while retaining the look and feel of an anti-capitalist posture? I mean, ultimately, wasn’t that what revolutionary communism ended up being?
Think of The Chaser as the subversives of late-stage capitalism.This time, instead of working against the system, we’re working within the system, using our subversion to help capitalism become better at its job. Never before has subversion looked so mainstream – and appealing to equity markets.
Sure, The Chaser used to break windows in the justice system, challenge the institutions of authority, and even tempt assassination by the US secret service, but ‘disruption’ in the start-up sense is just a more subtle form of that. The only change is that instead of overthrowing those in power, we seek to join them: but only in order to change them – if we get around to it.
Look at the great disrupters of the past 10 years. Uber, AirBNB, BuzzFeed, Facebook, Twitter. What do all these companies have in common (beyond making their founders rich beyond their wildest imaginings)? Not much – but isn’t making their founders rich beyond their wildest imaginings enough? Here at The Chaser, we tend to
We would like to announce that The Chaser has decided to set itself up with a similar structure to the companies that we most admire: the ones that avoid the most tax in the most jurisdictions around the world.
We’re not just saying this. We are actually doing it. Over the coming quarters, The Chaser’s Guide to Tax Havens will report in these pages exactly how we’re minimising our taxes, and we will tally the exact number of hospital beds, school teachers and green energy schemes The Chaser has avoided funding through its entirely legal structure. Welcome to the world of luxurious penury.
The Chaser’s CFO
(Name withheld for tax purposes)