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Let's say me and John the non-Jew are partners in a business owning 50 percent each. Can I...

  1. tell John that as far as I'm concerned we'll close on Shabbos but if he wants to keep the business open (since after all, HE loses money as well if we close then) then he can do that.

  2. collect the money made on that day?

I base this on the fact that Amira La'akum does not apply if I did not tell the non-Jew to do the work and if he does the Melacha for himself - in such a case it's not Assur to benefit from it (source 39 Melochos book).

Are there any discussions of this kind of deal?

Does it matter which one is the CEO?

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    See Shulchan Aruch OC chapter 245, it discusses this and many similar cases. – Ploni Oct 12 '18 at 4:26
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There are many cases of businesses operated on Shabbat in partnership with non-Jews. The classical case is that of a nursing home operated by a Jew, which needs to remain open and functioning on Shabbat. One is allowed to operate such a business by taking on a non-Jewish partner and stipulating from the beginning that the non-Jew is totally in charge of Shabbat work and receiving its remuneration. (Note that structuring these arrangements require a knowledgeable rabbi).

There is no need to rely on amira l'akum since one does not tell the non-Jew what to do, he does it on his own. There is also no issue with the Jew being the CEO. The key is for the non-Jew to receive the benefits made on Shabbat.

In the words of dailyhalacha

There are, however, arrangements that could be made to allow a business to run on Shabbat if the Jew co-owns the business with a gentile partner. Namely, as discussed by the Shulchan Aruch and Mishna Berura (OC 245), a Jew may arrange that his gentile partner receives all profits earned from the business on Shabbat. For example, the partners could agree that the gentile receives all profits earned on Shabbat, and the Jew will receive all profits earned on Tuesday. Once they agree to this arrangement, they may then divide monthly or annual revenues equally, even if the Shabbat profits exceed the Tuesday profits, as the excess revenue received by the Jew is legally considered a gift given to him by his partner.

See also here and here for more detailed overviews.

  • Does the non-Jewish partner need to retain the right to demand that he/she get the Stabbat profits if it gives them more money then an equal split? Eg does it need to be a true gift that is freely given each month/year? – Ian Ringrose 2 days ago
  • The key is that the partnership agreement stipulates the income for Shabbat goes to the non-Jew. Afterwards, if the partners want to split this way, they can do it. If they are unable or unwilling to do so, they can split the profits 50/50 (or whatever is their share of partnership) – mbloch yesterday

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