David Collard’s financial innovations – VAT’s the Scam?

by Kim Wingerei | Jan 16, 2024 | What's the scam?

Scale Facilitation’s CEO, David Collard, is alleged to have issued a grossly inflated invoice to boost the VAT refund his company could claim in the UK, adding to his long list of financial ‘innovations’.

Scrambling to find money to pay late wages and make overdue payments to buy failed battery start-up Britishvolt, his company issued an invoice with inflated expenses to a UK subsidiary which boosted the VAT (Value added Tax) refund the group could claim from HM Revenue & Customs, Open Politics has revealed.

On 30 April 2023, a Scale UK subsidiary, Scale Facilitation Operations Limited, invoiced Recharge Production UK for £8.66m (£7.22m + £1.44m in VAT) for ‘services’ provided by subsidiaries in Australia, the United States, and India in March. However, former Scale staff and external advisers reveal the invoice includes invented and inflated expenses, and tax experts in the UK are calling on authorities there to investigate the firm over its Value Added Tax (VAT) returns.

This is yet another chapter in the story of David Collard and the Scale Facilitation group.

The latest revelations from the UK follows Collard being sued for rent on both his fancy apartment in Manhattan as well as Scale’s 88th floor World Trade Centre headquarters, an ATO tax raid, unpaid staff and creditors, and defaulting on the purchase of Britishvolt in the UK. Scale subsidiary SaniteX Global Pty Ltd was ordered to be wound up by a Victorian Court in November last year.

Failure at Scale as high-flying Collard company ordered to wind up

Collard is an ex-PwC partner who may or may not have left the company of his own accord a few years back, but has nevertheless been advised by his former PwC colleagues to avoid tax at all – ahem – costs.

We are, of course, not for a moment suggesting that inflating invoices to increase the VAT refund was included in PwC’s advice. That really would be a scam too far.

Is PwC caught up in Scale Facilitation’s alleged $150 million tax fraud?

Kim Wingerei is a businessman turned writer and commentator. He is passionate about free speech, human rights, democracy and the politics of change. Originally from Norway, Kim has lived in Australia for 30 years. Author of ‘Why Democracy is Broken – A Blueprint for Change’.

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