February 18, 2012 - 18:39 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - It was discovered that Facebook owns an unused office in Amsterdam recently, with no employees and questions being raised over this.
The news was first broken in Dutch, by De Pers, and then translated into English by Dutch News, Neowin reports.
The Dutch Chamber of Commerce says that Facebook Netherlands BV is registered at Herengracht 282, which is a complex of temporary offices. The offices are owned by the Regus group, and Facebook holds one of them. Despite this, the company is not listed at reception and does not have a phone number. The company's official registration at the Chamber of Commerce claims that it would focus on selling advertising space, though has expanded into a financial holding company.
The Dutch expansion, according to De Pers, corresponds with the company's fiscal strategy. The lack of workers supposedly could allow the company to avoid taxation, which would go against Zuckerberg's previous quotation that his goal was to change the world, rather than make money.
The Netherlands is a popular location for 'letterbox companies', with over 20,000 existing in the country. Google also holds a base in The Netherlands, with no employees. The reason the country is popular for this is because it does not levy tax on royalties earned from overseas. Musical groups such as the Rolling Stones and U2 have previously made use of this part of Dutch legislation.
Facebook Netherlands BV is owned by Delaware-based Facebook Global Holdings. According to the ActionAid charity, The Netherlands is second only to the state of Delaware as a tax haven for London-listed companies.