Company (Business)

Researching Companies

Researching Companies

Identify Company Type

Company research requires you to determine if a company is a public company, private company, or a subsidiary. Make use of the databases below to make your determination.  Small and local businesses will require the use of a ReferenceUSA for making determinations.  Remember off campus access requires CSUSM ID and password. 

  • ReferenceUSA
    United States business directory of over 14 million private and public companies. Contains name, executives, type, sales, employee size etc. Users can search by SIC, yellow page heading, state, city, and down to the zip code level. mployee size etc. 

Public Company

Public Company Profiles, Annual Reports and Analysis

Business Source Premier  (CSUSM Premium) Search the Company Profiles.  Marketline reports include SWOTS!


Factiva  (CSUSM Premium) Good for public corporations.
***** ACCESS precaution    Please contact a  business librarian if you are having trouble accessing FACTIVA from off campus.  

Search Companies/Markets Tab along the top. 

Company snapshot, News, Web News, Multimedia, Key Developments, Peer Comparison, Financial Results--to see financial results by segment and reports. Look at the Performance/Segment Information section.

Earnings Calls:   Limit company search to Sources:  CQ FD Disclosure.


Earnings Calls:  ABI Inform.   Choose publications:  Disclosure Wire    Limit to Company Name.  Be sure to sort to most recent date.


Mergent Online (CSUSM Premium) Good for public corporations in depth financials.   Also has limited private co. info.
Detailed company profiles, history and in depth financial analysis, including SEC filings  
Commerical investing and new source, publicly available.  Freely available insight snippets

Hoovers Company Profiles (via ProQuest) (CSUSM Premium) 
Company snapshot, employee size, sales, basic financials, stock, NAIC and SEC filings including news (newspapers, legal,and patent)


ReferenceUSA  (CSUSM Premium)  Excellent for private companies also public company hierarchies.  Includes local branches of foreign companies operating in the United States. Also good for quick summary statistics by industry especially local competitors.

REFUSA:  Step By Step Guide to RefUSA Company & Competitor search


Market and Consumer analysis of Companies

Passport Euromonitor  (CSUSM Premium) Company profiles and market and brand share around the world

Financial Information & Annual Reports

How to read an annual report  (Short outline from IBM) (available on the free web)
Annual reports for U.S. public companies. EDGAR search (available on the free web)
Access to corporate electronic filings submitted by U.S. public companies directly to the U.S. Securities Exchange Commission.


Competition and Industry

Company analyst reports include strengths, weaknesses of the company and opportunities and threats. 

IBISWorld Industry Research  (CSUSM Premium)

Industry Research in over 700 reports by NAIC. In-depth Industry analysis, external, internal and economic, supply chain management. Contains some international reports for UK, Australia, China, and Global.

First Research (Mergent Intellect) (CSUSM Premium)
Industry research with limited competitor.  Excellent Interview prep questions. 

ReferenceUSA (US Only)

See the section for competitors.  This represents a geographic look at businesses close to your location by NAIC code. 






Starting a Company

Starting a Company

BUS 444/442 Antoniou New Venture Development

This page provides recommended sources to complete your Case Analysis and New Venture Development Plan.  This guide is organized according to your assignment requirements for those areas requiring outside research.

Preparation for BUS 444/442 Library Research Session 

  • Bizminer and Bizminer Tutorials -- Look under Resources to find short video tutorials prior to class. 
  • Census Business Builder  For small businesses.  Use for business plan data and potential market

The Firms Environment--Industry

Market Share

Market Trends

  • Association websites (National Restaurant Association for example), references to associations in news articles.  See the Industry Reports for specific industries.
  • Visit Business news premium sources tab on this guide. Trade magazine websites AND library article databases-the only place to find special reports you find these in the news databases, see the tab

Demographics and Market Potential

Business Plans


Entrepreneur Media, Inc (2015). Write your business plan: get your plan in place and your business off the ground (access until July 1, 2020 - COVID)

Butler, D. (2014). Business Planning for New Ventures: A Guide for Start-ups and New Innovations. 

Samples (don't pay for anything):

Operating Expenses

U.S. Economic Census Detailed Retail Trade and Operating Expenses
Related business and industry, manufacturing, and wholesale available as well.

The Firm


Occupational / Employees

Product or Service

  • Passport Euromonitor (Consumer purchase behavior).
  • Visit Business news premium sources tab on this guide. Craft search strategy to return information relevant to your needs. 


Tax forms

Business Expenses

Location, Location, Location

  • LoopNet  Commercial Real Estate Listings by category

Commercial Real Estate Brokerages

See San Diego Business Journal Book of Lists  (Reference Shelves) for list of the 19  Commercial Real Estate Brokerages in San Diego County (other metro areas available)

Need Help?

Judy Opdahl

Business & Economics Librarian
Office Telephone


Office Location

KEL 3424

Office Hours
Scroll Down to see if I am currently available via Chat. If not email for an research consultation (appointment).