The European Court of Justice has ruled that a subsidiary of the contractual employer may also be regarded as a 'transferor', within the meaning of Article 2(1)(a) of Council Directive 2001/23/EC (amending the Acquired Rights Directive), if the employees of the contractual employer were assigned to that subsidiary on a permanent basis (and thus permanently involved in an economic activity of the subsidiary). The Directive does therefore not require the transferred employees to be linked to the transferor by a contract of employment. As a consequence, employers should take into account that employees assigned to a transferred activity will also transfer to the transferee by operation of law, even if they are not contractually employed by the 'transferor', but by a subsidiary thereof, provided that they have been assigned to the 'transferor' on a permanent basis.