ASIC Approves Ridiculous Business Named After Aussie Billionaire’s Infamous Rant

"If anybody in this country doesn't minimise their tax they want their head read!"

ASIC Approves Ridiculous Business Named After Aussie Billionaire’s Infamous Rant

Image: Peter Morris/SMH

Australia’s corporate culture and all its associated titans have been a source of great amusement for us here at DMARGE for many years. Makes the likes of Jeff Bezos look positively tame and even giving people like Elon Musk a run for their money in terms of quotability and an anti-establishment cut to their jib, you can almost forgive their moral bankruptcy in favour of their rhetorical gifts…

And frankly, even if you can’t forgive the men in question, it seems their rhetorical outputs are here to stay. This week, our good friends over at The Aussie Corporate spotted that an infamous rant made by the iconic if problematic Kerry Packer has been immortalised through pretty unexpected means by an inspired Australian business owner…

WATCH: Kerry Packer’s ‘Tax Minimisation’ Rant In Full

For those that may have forgotten or are too young (to, in my case, too British…) to have ever encountered the rant itself, here’s a brief recap, as described by The Sydney Morning Heralds Stephanie Peatling:

“The year was 1991. Bob Hawke was prime minister, Bryan Adams ruled the music charts, ties were wide and the fad for old-timer-style glasses had not yet been co-opted by hipsters… Media mogul Kerry Packer was also in the spotlight for the tax practices of his company, Australian Consolidated Press. MPs could hardly contain themselves when they finally managed to get him to appear before a parliamentary committee.”

Suffice to say, the hearing didn’t get off to a good start and went quickly downhill from there. When asked to give his full name, title, and capacity in which he appeared before the committee, Packer let rip the immortal phrase: “Kerry Francis Bullmore Packer… and I appear here this afternoon reluctantly.”

Back to Peatling’s summary: “Mr Packer stared down committee member after committee member, including men once spoken of in hushed tones as future leadership material, Michael Lee and Peter Costello… MPs appeared to shrink in size as the hearing went on and Mr Packer grew more aggressive.”

Packer looking both a little younger and a little calmer… Image: Casino

Not a great deal of progress was made in any aspect of the hearing, but things got especially heated when Packer was asked about the tax practices of Australian Consolidated Press; here is the infamous response in full, given while Packer stirs his cup of tea with a gentleness that is decidedly not reflected in his tone of voice…

“I don’t know anybody that doesn’t minimise their tax… I’m not evading tax in any way shape or form. Of course I’m minimising my tax. If anybody in this country doesn’t minimise their tax they want their head read. As a government I can tell you you’re not spending it that well that we should be paying extra.”

Kerry Packer

Not only did journalists have a field day off the back of the rant but the lineup of MPs left looking deflated and significantly worse for wear… Packer had won the day. However, this once massive story has faded into history in the intervening three decades… until now.

Image: @theaussiecorporate

Our friends over at The Aussie Corporate noticed that the ASIC approved a business last October with a strangely familiar name… It seems that while Packer may have rubbed a few MPs up the wrong way, he won the hearts and minds of at least a few aspiring Aussie business owners.

Is this democracy manifest… or something else?