We know that Apple regularly buys small tech companies, the rate is now about a dozen every year. Here is a list of the buyouts: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_mergers_and_acquisitions_by_Apple I have noticed that some Apple investors believe that Apple Inc uses their foreign subsidiaries or foreign assets (offshore cash) to buy foreign (and maybe USA based) technology companies. I don't think Apple works that way. I believe it is Apple Inc (the founding company in Cupertino USA) that does the buying with their own cash (or sometimes maybe with Apple shares). Here is a page that shows some of the organization of Apple and their foreign subsidiaries: http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/...nternational-structure.html?ref=business&_r=0 Some of the Apple foreign subsidiaries are: - Apple Operations International - Apple Sales International - Apple Operations Europe - Apple Retail Holding Europe (located in Ireland) - Apple Retail UK (and several others for France, Germany, Spain etc) - Apple Distribution International (located in Ireland) - Apple Singapore - Apple Asia in-country distributors It appears that the first two companies listed, Apple Operations International and Apple Sales International, hold a very large amount of cash and liquid assets that total well over $100 billion and this is probably most of the money that is referred to as the Apple "offshore cash". The Apple foreign subsidiaries might use their cash to buy things and services that are central to their operations, such as store real estate, leases, retail equipment, and factory machinery used to manufacture iPhones, iPads, computers etc, since we know Apple owns manufacturing equipment and facilities in other countries. Probably most of this equipment is used in factories in China operated by contract manufacturers of Apple products. I don't think there is much evidence that Apple foreign subsidiaries buy small tech companies, or that the subsidiaries or Apple Inc use the offshore cash to make the purchase. I have looked at some of the news reports relating to a few buyouts, including foreign, and it is usually reported that "Apple" bought the company, sometimes it is definitely "Apple Inc", and I have not yet seen any confirmed report of involvement by an Apple subsidiary or use of offshore cash. There was some speculation in 2014 that it might be worthwhile for Apple to use offshore cash for the buyout of Beats, but no confirmation. http://appleinsider.com/articles/14...-deal-with-international-acquisition---report It is unlikely that Apple would have the foreign subsidiaries do the buying of the small tech companies, or use the offshore cash, for the following reasons: (1) Apple Inc has enough USA cash reserves to do these purchases since they are generally small and less than $100 million, a few are up to $500 million, and only Beats was more at about $4 billion. (2) The Apple foreign subsidiaries are used mainly to accumulate foreign profits while paying very low foreign tax rates and the profits are held there for the time being, to be later returned to Apple Inc when hopefully a lower USA tax situation occurs in a few years. If they were used to buy and operate foreign tech companies, that complicates the purpose and operations of the subsidiaries beyond their normal scope. (3) If a subsidiary purchased a small tech company with their foreign cash and then just transferred or gave it to Apple Inc, then Apple Inc would be essentially receiving the price of the company as income from the foreign subsidiary, and Apple Inc would need to pay income tax on that amount at a relatively high rate. (4) If the Apple subsidiaries are used to buy and operate small tech companies or merge them into Apple Inc's structure, that brings the independence of the Apple subsidiaries into question. If it is obvious that the Apple subsidiaries are essentially doing the business as Apple Inc and there is no independence or "arms-length" separation, then government tax authorities could rule that the subsidiaries are actually the same as Apple Inc and any special tax advantages of the foreign subsidiaries is gone, and all Apple income could become taxable at relatively high USA rates. (5) Apple seems to be satisfied with the current situation where they accumulate profits offshore while in the USA Apple Inc is easily able to run the company, do the AAPL buybacks, issue dividends, and take on some low-interest debt. (6) Tim Cook has said Apple does not use "tax gimmicks" so it is probable that they don't do anything tax-wise appears to be tricky or sneaky or would raise eyebrows or cause bad publicity in the future. What they are doing is conventional for large USA tech companies, although it is clear the corporate structuring is done for tax-minimization purposes. Discuss.