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Private Companies

The focus of this guide is to identify online and print company resources. The guide addresses both public and private companies.

Private Companies

private company is a company that is not traded on any stock exchange so it is not required to file detailed financial information with the SEC (Security Exchange Commission).  A private company can also be a subsidiary or division of a larger company. 

Finding information about private companies is more difficult and more time consuming to research than public companies. The information that is available will be less specific and less certain than information available for public companies. Use the resources below to get some information and use the resources listed in the Company News section to get more.


The resources below will provide some information on private companies such as estimates of sales and number of employees, competitors, etc.

State Filings

All 50 states make some level of private business incorporation information available online. In a few instances only limited information (such as name availability) is retrievable.  Search Secretary of State filings for the state in which the company operates.  To locate a particular Secretary of State’s searchable database, try the Secretaries of State site.

Private Company Rankings