Offshore A-Z is a digital repository of companies operating across major tax havens. Offshore A-Z exploits the inscrutability of such companies to speculate on their possible nature and intent. Each company listed on here is real, but the information surrounding these consist of both actual records, obtained by the Demystification Committee, and speculative images and mission statements, generated by algorithms.

Tax havens, or secrecy jurisdictions, employ laws and corporate regulations different from those of most jurisdictions, using secrecy as a prime tool. Furthermore, the agents operating offshore on behalf of clients elsewhere have been observed by the Demystification Committee to willfully introduce mistakes in the records held on the companies they help forming. (Offshore Investigation Vehicle, p. 87)

When offshore companies are but a bundle of papers held in private storages, these practices contribute to a number of possible configurations of any given offshore company, whose records are at once factually correct and conveniently flawed.

Offshore A-Z plays with the idea that truth is not one nor static, and that it does not need to be upheld equally at all times or in all fora.

Obtaining the data

The data contained within Offshore A-Z comes from a number of sources. Prior to the Offshore Leaks, the snippets of information available on offshore companies were largely confined to the outdated online registrars kept by tax havens, as an empty gesture towards transparency. Employing data scraping techniques, the Demystification Committee extracted records on hundreds of thousands of companies appearing in a number of such registrars.

Yielding varying amounts of information, and naturally full of gaps - sometimes full company details and descriptions, sometimes little more than a name - the records were cross referenced with data from the ICIJ’s Offshore Leaks as well as Financial Secrecy Index scores from the Tax Justice Network, and compiled into a single searchable database.

Training the algorithms

Algorithms were then trained to fill in the gaps in information. Using keywords from the company’s records as a trigger, the algorithms associate images with each nondescript company and complete missing fields by guessing possible incorporation dates or by generating corporate mission statement via a simple neural network. The coherency and accuracy of the neural network is directly undermined by the opaque source material, or incomplete input records. Finally, companies previously named in the Offshore Leaks ( for example) are hyperlinked to the relevant entry on the ICIJ database, allowing user to investigate further.

Compiling the template

The resulting information is autonomously built into a Web 2.0 page, employing a visual grammar similar to that used by existing registrars of companies. However, under intense scrutiny, the template mealts away revealing warm hues and floating forms.

This cycle of actions is repeated for each unreleased company found in the database and publicly announced by a Twitter bot.

Zooming in

Among the companies listed on the Offshore A-Z, a few appearing to be embedded in complex offshore vehicles were further investigated, resulting in three stories focusing on the funding behind Leave.EU, the corporate tax-avoidance of Barclays and the colonial origins of HSBC.

Offshore A-Z is a project by the Demystification Committee.

Company Name Leaked Registered Country
J & A ROSSIDES INTERIOR DESIGNERS 02-06-1977
CY
J & A CACTUS HOUSE 22-09-1981
CY
J & A OTTO SERVICE GARAGE 31-05-1976
CY
J & A BEAUTY SALOON 19-12-2006
CY
J & A CITY CLEANERS 31-12-1996
CY
J & A INVESTMENTS LIMITED true 26-10-2001
BM
J & B RACING FOUNDATION 11-06-2005
AW
J & C ARUBA BREWERY COMPANY NV 01-01-1995
AW
J & C CONSTRUCTION & MAINTENANCE LIMITED 20-07-1993
BM
J & C METAL WORK LTD 26-10-2010
CY
J & C PAPER COMPANY LIMITED 14-07-1970
HK
J & D BUILDING SERVICES LTD. 02-08-1993
BM
J & D Consulting Limited 19-07-2012
HK
J & D INTERNATIONAL TRADING COMPANY 04-07-2006
AW
J & D LTD. 12-05-2011
BM
J & D REAL ESTATE 24-04-2006
AW
J & E ENTERPRISE LTD 19-04-1994
MU
J & E NEARCHOU CONSTRUCTIONS LTD 07-10-2010
CY
J & F ARUBA BOTTLING 11-06-1994
AW
J & F CAR RENTAL, TOURS & SERVICES 12-02-2015
AW
J & F DEVELOPMENT & HOLDING COMPANY 02-02-2015
AW
J & G PITSILLIS - SOUVENIRS & GIFTS 03-07-2000
CY
J & H INTERMEDIARIES LIMITED 10-12-1984
BM
J & I ENTERPRISES 29-01-2008
AW
J & J ADMINISTRATION SERVICES 10-05-2004
AW
J & J BEAUTY DISTRIBUTORS 01-07-1989
AW
J & J BUSINESS CONSULTING LIMITED 21-08-2002
HK
J & J LIMITED true 30-06-1970
HK
J & J PRODUCE LTD. 11-03-2004
BM
J & J SNACK 01-01-1993
AW
J & J TRADE INTERNATIONAL 20-03-1993
AW
J & J. INVESTMENTS LIMITED 21-06-1971
BM
J & L COMPUTER SYSTEMS LIMITED 04-05-1998
HK
J & L GROUP LIMITED 12-10-2007
BM
J & L JEWELS LIMITED 03-08-2001
HK
J & M COMPANY LIMITED 08-06-2004
HK
J & M Electronics Limited 15-09-2005
HK
J & M MINI MARKET 12-01-2005
CY
J & M SNACK 01-02-1997
AW
J & O GLOBAL FORESTRY INVESTMENT FUND LTD. 13-05-2005
BM
J & P - ZEUS JOINT VENTURE 04-09-1998
CY
J & P AND J & P (O) JOINT VENTURE - VASILIKO PHASE II 14-02-2003
CY
J & P HOLDING COMPANY N.V. 18-10-1981
AW
J & R FARMS INC. 08-05-1996
BB
J & R HOLDING LIMITED 12-08-1995
BM
J & R PRODUCTION LIMITED 17-05-2006
HK
J & R TAKE AWAY 15-10-1996
AW
J & R TAKE AWAY 09-02-2000
AW
J & S HEAVY EQUIPMENT & MORE 21-04-2014
AW
J & S OTTEN (INTERNATIONAL) LTD. 28-11-1996
BM