Bulletins

EU court backs Amazon over $300 million tax bill

Vestager loses in latest battle between European regulators and U.S. tech giants.

European Commission Executive Vice President Margrethe Vestager stares with her finger on her mouth in front of a microphone.

An EU court sided with Amazon over a $300 million tax bill.

Image: Web Summit / Protocol

Amazon won an appeal over a $300 million tax bill on Wednesday when a European court canceled a 2017 decision finding that the e-commerce giant owed the money to Luxembourg.


In the latest twist in the long-running battle between the European Commission and U.S. tech giants, the court said that the body hadn't proven that Amazon got an illegal advantage from Luxembourg's tax policies.

Amazon said the decision "is in line with our long-standing position that we followed all applicable laws and that Amazon received no special treatment," according to the Wall Street Journal. The order would have cost it €250 million.

Margrethe Vestager, who heads the commission's competition bureau as well as telecom and tech regulation, said in a statement that she would consider next steps for the decision, which is appealable. Vestager had previously lost in the same court over an order to Apple to pay Ireland 13 billion euros.

According to the Journal, Amazon directed EU transactions through a company that paid royalties to an untaxed Luxembourg parent, which reduced its levy. The structure was known as Project Goldcrest, a reference to Luxembourg's national bird.

Theranos 'valued PR' over patients, an ex-employee says

Adam Rosendorff said he felt pressured to vouch for tests he did not have confidence in. His testimony appeared to tie Holmes more closely to the lab's failures.

Elizabeth Holmes leaves the San Jose courthouse where her fraud trial is underway.

Photo: Jane Tyska/Digital First Media/The Mercury News via Getty Images

Former Theranos lab director Adam Rosendorff testified Friday that he repeatedly raised the alarm about bad blood tests to then-CEO Elizabeth Holmes, ultimately concluding that the company valued press and funding more than the patients.

"I was very enthusiastic working at Theranos in the beginning. Over time, I came to realize that the company really valued PR and fundraising above patient care, and I became very disillusioned," Rosendorff said on the witness stand inside the San Jose courtroom where Holmes' trial on fraud charges began this month.

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Biz Carson

Biz Carson ( @bizcarson) is a San Francisco-based reporter at Protocol, covering Silicon Valley with a focus on startups and venture capital. Previously, she reported for Forbes and was co-editor of Forbes Next Billion-Dollar Startups list. Before that, she worked for Business Insider, Gigaom, and Wired and started her career as a newspaper designer for Gannett.


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