The seat of the label Prada is returning to Italy after evidence surfaced that the company transferred Prada Holding, the controlling shareholder of the house, to the Netherlands and Luxembourg to avoid paying taxes totaling roughly £390million, or $532 million.
Miuccia Prada, 64, whose grandfather founded Prada, is under investigation, along with company chairman Miuccia Prada, chief executive officer Patrizio Bertelli and accountant Marco Salomoni, for avoiding the declaration of tax claims or making false tax claims.
In late December, Prada agreed return its seat to Italy and pay backdated tax; Bertelli said: “We are very pleased to have taken this strategic decision, consistent with our desire to invest on Italy.”
The Milan-based company came under investigation by prosecutors in recent days when a taxman reported that Prada disclosed undeclared taxable income. But Stefano Simontacchi and Guido Alleva, lawyers for Prada, claimed that Prada was unaware of an investigation and documents germane to the investigation have been given to prosecutors. They said, “As it stands we are not aware of there being an investigation. In any case, the new rules which are expected to enter into force regarding voluntary disclosure should be considered applicable to the present case, thereby leading to decriminalization.”
Italy has been attempting to clamp down on tax avoidance, because experts estimated £90billion a year was being lost in undeclared revenues. Last July, designers Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana received one year and eight month prison sentences for non-declaration of income.