To locate company information, private or public, will come from a variety of information sources. You will need to review reference books, magazines, newspapers, articles and financial data from the library's electronic databases as well as governmental website. Each box on this page will guide you to these varied sources of information. In addition, you will want to review the company's website if they have one and also check the other pages in the guide for 'competitor' information and 'industry information'.
You should also research articles in newspapers, magazines or trade journals from our databases. You will also want to create a SWOT analysis that you populate with strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. I highly recommend you complete a SWOT analysis on one or two key competitors as well as the industry.
If the company is publicly-held, the company's investor relations page is an excellent starting point.
Review the various boxes on this page to locate the primary resources as you begin your research.
Your first database to use for newspapers should be ProQuest. In ProQuest, you want to go review the first page and select what options you need and then select "Continue".
It is on this second page, you will want to review the tabs across the top and select "Advanced Search". In the first search box, use the pull-down menu and select "Company/Org" and enter a company name. In the remaining search boxes, use "Citation and Abstract" and enter any additional keywords that will help you narrow your results such as marketing, human resources, strategy, etc.
If you decide you only want articles from a specific publication such as Wall Street Journal or Barron's, enter the publication title in the form under "More Search Options".
After the search is complete, review the results and click on "Refine Search" to modify any search terms or click on any of the "Suggested Topic" Links.
Here is the link:
When researching privately-held companies, one will need to research competitors and the industry for additional information but we have a new reference title in the Library that will offer a good start.
In our Reference Book Section:
Hoover's Handbook of Private Companies (MCOB HG 4057.A28816 2011) - this reference has four sections: profile information and how to use; a listing section of the fastest-growing private companies; the actual company profile section (900 profiles) arranged alphabetically and the last section has three indexes. These indexes sorts the companies by industry group, the second by HQ location and the last index contain information on the executives.
Recommendations on additional reference resources that can assist with both private and publicly held companies:
Hoover Handbook of American Business (MCOB HG 4057.A 28617)
We have many business databases but perhaps these two are your best 'first-stop' to gather SWOT Analysis, articles and industry news specific to your company or group of companies you are researching: