DEMPE Analysis in Transfer Pricing

November 10, 2023

The business world is constantly evolving, and related-company transactions are becoming more common worldwide. In order to ensure these transactions are fair, it is really crucial to perform a DEMPE Transfer Pricing analysis to comply with these tax regulations and avoid controversies with tax authorities.

What Is a DEMPE Analysis?

The DEMPE acronym means “Desarrollo, Mejora, Mantenimiento, Protección y Explotación” (Development, Enhancement, Maintenance, Protection, and Exploitation) for intangible assets. In the Transfer Pricing context, the DEMPE analysis focuses on the evaluation of the arising, performance, management, and implementation of intangible assets in a company. It is essential, given that intangible assets, such as brands, patents, know-how, and others, often play a crucial role in a company’s transactions.

The DEMPE Analysis Relevance

The DEMPE analysis is essential to determine whether a company is paying or being fairly compensated due to the use of intangible assets in related-party transactions. Therefore, several key aspects must be considered:

  • Development: Has the company invested in research and development to create or enhance intangible assets?
  • Enhancement: Have ongoing efforts been made to enhance and optimize these assets?
  • Maintenance: Has the company supplied resources to maintain and protect the intangible assets?
  • Protection: Have measures been taken to legally protect intangible assets, such as patents or copyrights?
  • Exploitation: Is the company actively using these assets in its business operations?

DEMPE Analysis Benefits

Performing a DEMPE Transfer Pricing analysis can contribute several benefits to companies:

  • Regulatory Compliance: It helps to ensure compliance with tax regulations and avoid penalties and fines.
  • Transparency: It provides a solid basis to support Transfer Pricing and evidence the accurate compensation due to the use of intangible assets.
  • Risk Reduction: It reduces the litigation risk with tax authorities and controversies between related parties.
  • Tax Optimization: It enables the optimization of the Transfer Pricing structure to reduce the tax burden legally.

Procedures for an Effective DEMPE Analysis

An effective DEMPE analysis requires a solid methodology. There are some key points hereunder:

  • Intangible Assets Identification: Identify key intangible assets used in the company’s transactions.
  • Documentation: Gather documentation evidencing the development, enhancement, maintenance, protection, and exploitation of these assets.
  • Comparison: Compare the company with others in the same industry to determine whether the DEMPE practices are consistent.
  • Adjustments: Adjust Transfer Pricing, if applicable, to properly reflect the contribution of intangible assets.
  • Communication: Keep a transparent and effective communication with tax authorities to avoid misunderstandings and controversies.


The DEMPE Transfer Pricing analysis is an essential tool in the current business world. It ensures companies pay or are fairly compensated due to the use of intangible assets and comply with tax regulations. Companies can optimize their transactions and reduce tax risks when investing time and resources in an effective DEMPE analysis, which enables them to focus on their growth and ongoing success in a global business environment.