When Pierre Karl Péladeau was president of Quebecor from 1999 to 2012, the company made more than $3 billion in profits and paid 12 per cent in taxes, an investigation by the Radio-Canada investigative program Enquête has found.
During that time, the average taxes paid by Canadian companies was 22 per cent.
Tax specialists say there's no evidence of tax fraud, however.
Quebecor vehemently challenged these findings, saying it paid $774 million in taxes during that time, or 24 per cent of its net revenues before taxes. Quebecor also mentions an additional $447 million in deferred taxes, or 14 per cent of its net revenues before taxes.
That makes the percentage of taxes paid 38 per cent, the company said in a statement.
Quebecor's name linked to tax havens
Last week, Enquête found about 30 companies and branches that seem to have a link with Quebecor which were active in a dozen countries known to be tax havens.
A clear link was found between printing company Quebecor World, a subsidiary of Quebecor until 2008, and 21 of these companies. They are based in Barbados, the British Virgin Islands, Ireland, Luxembourg, Panama and Switzerland.
In the case of six other companies whose names contain the words Quebecor, Quebecor World or World Color, the company denies any connection with Quebecor and Quebecor Media.
Quebecor would neither confirm nor deny these firms' connections with Quebecor World, because Quebecor hasn't been a controlling shareholder of the subsidiary since 2008.
Péladeau has repeatedly said in the past that, under his supervision, Quebecor never had subsidiaries in tax havens.
Quebecor also denies any link between itself and five companies whose names contain the word Vidéotron.
Only one company with that name had a relationship with Quebecor Media. It was a subsidiary of Vidéotron that came with the company when it was acquired in 2000, but it was never used and was liquidated in 2002.