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 Prior to the Offshore Leaks, the snippets of information available on offshore companies were largely confined to the outdated online registrars kept by tax havens, as an empty gesture towards transparency.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
Y & A AESTHETICS LIMITED 20-04-2010
CY
Y & A CONSULTING ENGINEERS LIMITED 28-05-2010
CY
Y & B LOGISTICS LIMITED 17-06-2015
HK
Y & G INDUSTRIES LIMITED 27-05-1980
HK
Y & H TRADING COMPANY LIMITED 01-02-2008
CY
Y & S TRADING CO LTD 30-04-1996
MU
Y & T (FAR EAST) CO., LIMITED 12-05-2000
HK
Y & Z CINEPHOTOGRAPHIC SERVICES 15-05-1979
CY
Y and S Service Company Limited 15-03-2007
HK
Y BEAUTY INC. 21-08-1959
KY
Y BOUTIQUE LIMITED 23-05-1980
HK
Y STOCK LTD. 26-03-1919
KY
Y YUK (HOLDINGS) LIMITED 13-08-1971
HK
Y-DEAL 01-08-2001
AW
Y-DIMENSION (CYPRUS) LTD 17-12-2010
CY
Y-HOLDINGS LIMITED 30-03-2010
CY
Y-MUTUAL INSURANCE, LTD. 17-11-1986
BM
Y-Y ESTATES LIMITED 11-11-1977
HK
Y. C. CHENG & SONS COMPANY, LIMITED 20-09-1960
HK
Y. C. PUBLICATION COMPANY LIMITED 04-07-1995
HK
Y. CEE INTERNATIONAL HOLDINGS LIMITED 14-04-1993
BM
Y. CLEANTHOUS & ASSOCIATES LLC 25-02-2010
CY
Y. K. KWOK'S NURSERY & COMPANY LIMITED 14-11-1964
HK
Y. KAZANTZIS METALS LIMITED 16-12-2009
CY
Y. L. WEI & COMPANY (H.K.) LIMITED 27-10-1962
HK
Y. P. SZE ENGINEERING COMPANY (H.K.) LIMITED 18-10-1962
HK
Y. S. KWAAN NOMINEES LIMITED 20-10-1977
HK
Y. S. KWOK ASSOCIATES LIMITED 02-07-1958
HK
Y. SAVVIDES FOOD SUPPLIES LTD 16-07-2010
CY
Y. SOTIRIOU SERVICES LTD 26-04-2010
CY
Y. T. TRADING 15-04-2015
AW
Y. T. WAI COMPANY, LIMITED 19-06-1979
HK
Y. WONG TRAVEL SERVICE LIMITED 08-05-1979
HK
Y.A.SWEETY LTD 04-05-2010
CY
Y.AL CONSTRUCTIONS LTD 24-09-2010
CY
Y.B.I. INVESTMENT COMPANY LIMITED 19-06-1979
HK
Y.C.GOAH CO., LIMITED 14-01-2014
HK
Y.D. SUN DEVELOPMENT LIMITED 04-07-1995
HK
Y.D.O. COMPANY LIMITED 14-01-2005
HK
Y.F. 2 PLUS 4 LTD 09-04-2010
CY
Y.F. KNITTING & SILK-DYEING, LIMITED 27-06-1980
HK
Y.H. TOPO SOLUTIONS LTD ΚΑΙ ΜΑΡΙΟΣ ΛΑΔΙΑΣ ΚΟΙΝΟΠΡΑΞΙΑ 03-03-2008
CY
Y.I. MUAY THAI LIMITED 20-12-2010
CY
Y.J. MANPOWER 01-09-2012
AW
Y.K.K. PETROLEUM PRODUCTS LIMITED 21-09-2009
CY
Y.K.K. ZIPPER (MIDDLE EAST) S.A.L. 21-04-1983
CY
Y.K.K. ZIPPER MIDDLE EAST S.A.L. 10-03-1931
CY
Y.M. EDMONDS (H.K.) LIMITED 16-06-1964
HK
Y.M. INFORMATION CENTER CORPORATION 16-02-1884
KY
Y.M.F. LTD. 20-09-1995
KY