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The French luxury conglomerate said the inquiry by the French National Financial Public Prosecutor’s Office appears to be linked to legal proceedings initiated in November 2017 involving LGI, the Group’s Swiss subsidiary.
Kering said in a company statement that, following a press article implicating Kering published online on December 15, 2020, France’s Parquet National Financier (National Financial Public Prosecutor’s Office) has confirmed having opened a preliminary inquiry concerning Kering in February 2019. The French luxury Group said it had not previously been informed of this inquiry, which “appears to be linked to the potential consequences for Kering French companies resulting from legal proceedings initiated in November 2017 involving LGI, the Group’s Swiss subsidiary”. The proceedings resulted in a settlement between Gucci and the Italian tax authorities in May 2019.
“Kering refutes in the strongest possible terms the allegations contained in the press article and forwarded by other media. The Group intends to fully cooperate with the inquiry, in complete transparency and serenity. Kering will continue to communicate diligently and openly about tax litigation”, reads the statement.
As previously reported by ILM, LGI allegedly conducted business activities in Italy which should have resulted in payment of Italian corporation tax. Kering was to pay €1.25 billion to the Italian authorities, including €897 million in additional taxes, along with further payments for penalties and interest.