One to One: Nic Arnold
The industry has come a long way in terms of its attitude towards taxation, but there is still a long way to go in terms of governance and structures…
In the most recent Digital Dialogue, Martin Redmayne speaks with Nic Arnold, Tax Director in PwC’s Private Office, to talk candidly about the evolution of attitudes towards taxation within the superyacht industry and the steps that still need to be taken to ensure client interests are well and truly protected through their tax structures.
As well as operating within one of the world’s leading tax offices, Arnold is an excellent commentator on the nuances of superyacht taxation and, importantly, how various liabilities tie into an ultimate beneficial owner’s wider asset portfolio. Taxation, and the issues therein, has remained one of the market’s most pervading concerns for a number of years, gathering even greater momentum in the wake of the Paradise Papers.
“When I first came into the industry we were on the wave of quite a lot of change in terms of attitude towards tax generally…The industry was definitely lagging behind [in terms of] a change in emphasis from jumping through a thousand hoops to not pay tax to doing the right thing and understanding what your responsibilities and choices are. I’ve seen some progress in the luxury asset space, including superyachts, which is very positive, but we are still on a journey in that regard,” starts Arnold.
“The frustration in the industry, is that if we are really going to raise the bar [in terms of] quality of advice, governance relating to tax, yacht builds and crew experience, everyone needs to take more responsibility for understanding what that holistic experience is like. Because if I don’t make the fiscal element of the yacht owners experience smooth, then that is just another nail in the coffin of them not wanting to be in the industry and it can be a very frustrating nail because the fiscal underlay, the structural basis upon which a superyacht is run, can create too many operational struggles and too much friction, and then it destroys the experience.”
Arnold explores off the shelf models and suboptimal structures, imploring owners and family offices to ask the right questions and ensure that yachting considerations become client profile considerations.
To learn more about the pitfalls of inefficient tax structures and the importance of holistic governance, watch the full video here.
Nic Arnold, Tax Director in PwC’s Private Office
The One to One series is a collective campaign for change and industry improvement, and we welcome participants from all sectors. (If you would like to take part, or contribute your thoughts, please contact Research Editor, Clare Sidwell.
You can view the ever-growing archive of Digital Dialogues here.
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