The V4NA news agency, allegedly based in London might be deceptive. According to Átlátszó.hu’s own research, based on various sources, the agency could not be found anywhere in the UK. Árpád Habony, the unofficial main advisor of the prime minister, and the defense minister Kristóf Szalay Bobrovniczky both have interests in the agency. V4NA “international” agency delivered thousands of news for government-friendly media sources over the years, while in the meantime it was located in Óbuda the whole time.
Even the official site of the agency states that it is located at Kingsway, London. This is important because the agency advertised itself as an “international news agency”. Supposedly they worked with an apparatus of fifty correspondents who processed and sold international news items. V4Na promotes itself as having correspondents in most major cities full-time. The account of an ex-employee of the agency states that the central office was not in London but in Óbuda, Átlátszó wrote. The mentioned journalist says:
“they never experienced any sign of existence of a European correspondent network.”
Many government-friendly media used V4NA as a trustworthy “international” source, where the information allegedly came right from the ground. It is said that the agency had moved its headquarters from the previous office but it was confirmed that it still operates in Budapest, probably located at the headquarters of Mediaworks. More than 3000 articles have been published that referred to the agency as a source just in the past year. Experts say the operation of the agency raises ethical and legal concerns.
The name of the agency itself may be unfamiliar to many as it likes to wrap itself in secrecy. The main narrative of the news agency supports the statements of the Hungarian government. Regarding Western Europe, they say it is gripped in terror by “immigrants crimes” and “gender mania”, while in Hungary everything is fine and the prime minister is doing a great job.
The agency might have gotten an address in London through a company register named Your Company Formations for an insignificant amount of money. In accordance with the ex-employee, only around 20 people worked at the agency back then. The content is rather made of translations than real reporting. It is questionable whether it is a real agency or just some shady business practice.
Update: According to one of our readers, the address of V4NA’s registered office is 125 Kingsway, London WC2. The building is known as Aviation House and all 10 floors are occupied by an international company called “We Work”. They provide co-working space and office facilities which can be rented for a day or longer by any company. These virtual offices, as they are known, can be used as a registered office under current UK law even if only rented for one day.