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Company Research

Searching for Company Information

You can often find detailed and timely information about companies in academic journals, professional and trade magazines, and newspapers. These sources can be useful if you are having difficulty locating information on a private company, or if you want to supplement the information you've found in databases like Mergent, CB Insights, or MarketLine.

For a list of the key databases to search for articles and news, see the Articles and News guide.

 


Tip: Use the advanced search interface on a database and to search for the company name in the company entity or company/organization field.

Databases will usually identify the companies that are mentioned in an article, so searching this field directly will return more relevant results. For example, a basic search for "apple" will return all the articles that contain the word "apple", while searching for "apple" in the company entity or company/organization field will only return articles on companies with the word "apple" in their name.

Company Strategies

Companies rarely make formal statements about their strategy, however you can get a lot of information from their annual reports, from articles and news stories, and (for public companies) from company earnings calls.

 

Annual reports

Search for the company you are interested in. Choose the Reports tab, then choose Annual Reports.

For more information on finding annual reports, see the Annual Reports & Financials tab on this guide.

 

Articles and news stories

Companies may also discuss their strategy in journal or magazine articles or in news stories.

Company earnings conference calls (public companies only)

This is when the company speaks to shareholders about opportunities and threats facing the company/industry. As such, the company's strategy will often be discussed. 

For more information, see FAQ: How do I find earnings conference calls?

Competitors

Most company databases will list a company's competitors or companies that are similar or in the same industry (regardless of whether they actually compete for the same customers).

For example, in Mergent Online:

  • For public companies: Search for the company and then click the 'Competitor' tab
  • For private companies: Select the 'D&B 20M Private Company data' tab, then Limit by SIC (industry code) and Country/City etc. to generate a list of competitors

Marketline and CB Insights provide similar data.

 

Free online directories

SWOT ANALYSIS

You can use the following resources to find SWOT analyses (definition) for a company

Supply Chain Analysis

Analyst Reports

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