Company reports range in depth from simple directory entries with little more than address and business description to full blown book length company histories.
The quantity and quality of company information available often turns on whether the company is public or private, domestic or foreign and a parent or subsidiary. Generally speaking the most abundant information is available for public parent companies. A company is classified as public if it offers shares on a stock exchange and is obligated to disclose financial and business information by securities laws. A subsidiary company is owned or controlled by another company and is a so called family member of the parent firm. Typically parent companies consolidate the subsidiaries financial performance so information may be scarce. Many foreign markets have more robust disclosure rules for private firms than the U.S. , but practical hurdles such as language barriers and limited access to foreign company databases exist.
Many company databases are feature rich offering sophisticated screeners and tables for comparing peers.
The 10K (domestic) and 20F(foreign) filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission form the backbone of many company profiles as they describe the business operations, strategy, risks and provide financials. Search limited to company name. EMIS Intelligence (Emerging Markets Information Service)
Before you can get company information, you much choose a country, then use the Company tab and user the screener Lexis-Nexis Company Dossier
Provides full-text access to company profiles and dossiers. MarketLine Company Profiles
Simple search by name. Covers both U.S. and foreign companies in a wide range of industries. Typically reports are 15-20 pages and provide a description of the business, company history, key personnel, products and services and competitors. Mergent Online
Provides 15 years of detailed financial statements for traded international and U.S. companies. Enables customized viewing and output to retrieve company reports and financials into software applications such as Word, Excel or Adobe, and enables accurate cross-border searches using a variety of financial and text variables. LIMITED TO 4 SIMULTANEOUS USERS. Mergent WebReports
Features the full text of all of Mergent / Moody's Corporate Manuals from 1909 to the present. Once you enter the database select the option for "Corporate Manuals" and begin your search. Good for historical background. Morningstar Investment Research Center
Morningstar offers a screener and financial analysts reports on covered companies. NetAdvantage (Standard & Poor's, Capital IQ)
Profiles for public companies include discussion of stock performance, governance issues, strategy and outlook. Screener also available. D&B Global Business Browser
Offers public and private company and industry information including company profiles, market research reports from Marketline, Freedonia, Euromonitor and RMA updated with recent news, executive profiles and analyst reports. Formerly known as Onesource/Avention. ReferenceUSA
Onesource module provides reports in-depth reports on large US and foreign firms. US Business module provides contact info, location, credit rating and more for many small firms. Value Line Investment Survey
Designed to help investors analyze and select stocks by performing a broad range of functions including sorting, filtering (screening), graphing and reporting on individual stocks and groups of stocks.