UPDATE 1-Big Yellow weighs legal options on self storage VAT

July 10 Tue Jul 10, 2012 3:24am EDT

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July 10 (Reuters) - Britain's Big Yellow Group Plc said it sought legal opinion to challenge a proposal in Finance Minister George Osborne's budget to introduce VAT on self storage companies from October 1.

The rental of self storage units is currently exempt from sales tax, having been treated as a licence to occupy land in the same way as renting commercial property.

"There may be grounds to challenge the decision, and we are currently considering our legal options," said Big Yellow, which helps people and businesses store goods, equipment and furniture while moving homes and offices.

Any appeal to the tax commissioner would only take place after October 1, when the tax is proposed to be introduced, the company said.

Big Yellow, along with larger rival Safestore Holdings Plc , have warned the introduction of VAT would hurt the self storage industry across the UK.

The company, also said total store revenue at its 54 wholly owned stores grew 10 percent to 16.9 million pounds ($26.23 million) for the first quarter.

Shares in Big Yellow were down about 1 percent at 290.4 pence on the London Stock Exchange at 0720 GMT.

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