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LEI – Legal Entity Identifier

The dataset

The LEI is a 20-digit, alpha-numeric code based on the ISO 17442 standard developed by ISO and published by the Global Legal Entity Identifier Foundation (GLEIF). It connects to key reference information that enables clear and unique identification of legal entities participating in financial transactions. 

Established by the Financial Stability Board in June 2014, GLEIF is a not-for-profit organisation created to develop and promote the implementation and use of the LEI and its digital counterpart the verifiable LEI (vLEI). GLEIF is headquartered in Basel, Switzerland.

The source

The Global Legal Entity Identifier Foundation (GLEIF) is a not-for-profit organisation created to support the implementation and use of the Legal Entity Identifier (LEI)

LEIs connect to the key reference information that enables clear and unique identification of legal entities participating in financial transactions. 

OpenCorporates is a strategic partner to GLEIF (the Global Legal Entity Identifier Foundation). Our Founder, Chris Taggart, was an inaugural GLEIF board member, and GLEIF uses our data routinely to quality-assure the LEI data they issue.

Similar to OpenCorporates, GLEIF publishes an open database of Legal Entity Identifiers (LEIs) – which are a unique identifier for counterparties involved in financial transactions, so they’re heavily utilised in the financial services world.

Each company has its own record and is issued a uniquely identifying LEI.

LEIs are issued LOUs (Local Operating Units) – organisations accredited by GLEIF to issue LEIs.

To help better serve banks, financial regulatory authorities and others in the financial services sector, GLEIF has mapped many of the LEI records to their corresponding OpenCorporates company records.


Currently we update LEI data monthly.

There are plans in the near future to increase the frequency.

Mapping Decisions

The total population of LEIs that exist is currently over 2 million as of the 1st June 2023. Out of these, GLEIF have currently mapped over 1.3 million.

Why weren’t we able to map the entire LEI population?

  1. Some LEIs are issued to kinds of organisations that are not legal entities as per our definition (i.e. those not registered at official company registers, such as funds
  2. A relatively strict criteria has been applied in order to create matches between an LEI and an OC company record
    1. Exact name match
    2. ID match (with predefined regular expressions where required)
  3. Some LEIs are issued in jurisdictions that we don’t yet have any data for

Table 1 – Critical fields considered for mapping

OpenCorporatesDescription & CommentsLEIDescription & Comments
Fields considered for pre-processing
  Registration StatusLEIs with Registration Status of ANNULLED or DUPLICATE are excluded
  EntityCategoryLEIs with EntityCategory FUND are excluded
  RegistrationAuthorityIdLEIs which use reserved Registration Authority codes RA888888 (temporary code; new registration authority code requested) and RA999999 (no registration authority available for this legal entity).

(GLEIF Registration Authority code list)
  RegistrationAuthorityEntityIDValidationAuthorityEntityIDLEIs without a local identifier
Fields considered as equivalents for mapping
Company NumberIdentifier given by the Company register to the entity. Together with the Jurisdiction Codethis forms a composite primary key for a legal entityRegistrationAuthorityEntityIDValidationAuthorityEntityIDOtherValidationAuthorityEntityIDAll available entity IDs of an LEI Record are used to establish a mapping pair. All white spaces are removed and jurisdiction-specific pre-processing of entity IDs is applied where necessary
Jurisdiction CodeCode for the jurisdiction (lowercase, underscoreversion of ISO 3166-2 code). List of jurisdictioncodes are availableat https://api.opencorporates.com/jurisdictions  LegalJurisidictionThe LegalJurisdiction element is transformed to match the lowercase, underscoreversion of the ISO 3166-2 code

Transformation decisions

Some additional pre-processing is done to the local registry IDs to better facilitate matching.

Due to differences in how GLEIF & OpenCorporates have approached identifiers there are small differences between them. Below is a list of the jurisdictions we have added preprocessing logic to improve matching.

OC has normalised company identifiers to ensure uniqueness across the jurisdiction, as well as removing non-semantic characters such as spaces, periods, dashes, etc, so that the identifiers work in URLs and make matching easier (though we also maintain the original format as per the source).

GLEIF has taken the identifier as supplied by the registering companies, and this can lead to some inconsistencies. Therefore as part of the matching process performed by the GLEIF the following preprocessing is done.

This is the current list of preprocessed jurisdictions:

JurisdictionIdentifier processingComment
BERemove all dots (“.”) 
BSIf entity ID does not end with “B” or “C”, add “B”This preprocessing is known to be insufficient so we are working with GLEIF to improve
CARemove all hyphensSometimes LEI data only uses “CA” without additional region code – Hyphens removed for CA and all its region codes
CYReplace Greek letter “ΗE” with Latin “HE”OC is using the Latin “ΗE” instead of “HΕ”
DEPrefix is added to entity ID for each registration authority. GLEIF : Store the court id and id as their local registry idOC : Store the court id and concatenate with the company type and id into a single string Examples:G1309_HRB1234. Company registered at the Neuruppin court, in the HRB register with identifier 1234R2201_R2205_HRB1216. Company registered at the Bochum court, formerly the Herne-Wanne (Herne) court in the HRB register with identifier 1216X1721R_HRB918SB. Company registered at the Lübeck court, formerly the Schwarzenbek court in the HRB register with identifier 918.
ESOnly consider digits and remove all characters 
FROnly consider first 9 digits 
GGAdd “1-” at the beginning of the entity IDCurrently not every company is being matched due to other differences, we are working with GLEIF to improve this.
LIReplace all dots with hyphens 
SEOC uses NNNNNN-NNNN format, Add a hyphen in case the EntityId has 10 digits without a hyphen 
US-CARemove leading C 
US-ORRemove all hyphens 

Should you require further information please reach out to:

[email protected], [email protected]

Accessing the data

You can now find companies with LEIs In our products:

Website – Displayed in the company data records on our website – you’ll just need to log in (for free) first.

API – If you receive our data via our API, LEIs are displayed as an attribute in company records. You can also search for a LEI number by using identifier_uids as a search parameter

"identifiers": [
    "identifier": {
      "uid": "254900OPPU84GM83MG36",
      "identifier_system_code": "lei",
      "identifier_system_name": "LEI"

Bulk data – If you receive our data via bulk downloads, the Alternative Identifiers file you receive will include LEIs. 

Updated on June 9, 2023

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