Salmond sets up private firm to handle publishing cash



Alex Salmond
Alex Salmond

Alex Salmond has set up an unlimited company to handle revenue acquired through his burgeoning writing career.

The former First Minister is the sole shareholder in The Chronicles Of Deer, which will receive the outside earnings from his published works.

The company already has the copyright on his best-selling referendum diary ‘The Dream Shall Never Die’ and is similar to those set up by other authors to reduce their tax liabilities.

The arrangement means that revenue would be taxed at the corporation rate of 20 per cent rather than the higher income tax rate of 40 per cent or 45 per cent.

Although no money has yet been deposited in the company’s coffers, when it is, it can then be withdrawn gradually as salary and dividends, reducing income tax and national insurance.

Mr Salmond, who is MSP for Aberdeenshire East, declared the new arrangement in his Scottish Parliament register of interests earlier this month – it was published on Friday.

In the Scottish Parliament register of interests, he states: “From March 2, 2015 I have owned an ordinary shareholding worth £1 in Chronicles Of Deer, a company for publishing books and writings.

“This constitutes 100 per cent of the issued share capital.

Because the new company is unlimited rather than limited, Mr Salmond has unlimited liability for any debts and is not required to file annual accounts at Companies House.

However, Mr Salmond, who is also standing in Gordon for the Westminster election on May 7, has told the parliament he will voluntarily update his register of interests.

The Chronicles Of Deer was incorporated as a private unlimited company on February 13.

Its directors are solicitor Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh and John Cairns, who is an accountant who specialises in “tax efficient investments”.