Type of business organization that allows a firm (called parent) and its directors to control or influence other firms (called subsidiaries). This arrangement makes venturing outside one's core industry possible and, under certain conditions, to benefit from tax consolidation, sharing of operating losses, and ease of divestiture. The legal definition of a holding company varies with the legal system. Some require holding of a majority (80 percent) or the entire (100 percent) voting shares of the subsidiary whereas other require as little as five percent.
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