BA 150, 250 & 278 - Sickert: Company Info

Resources for entrepreneurship

Research Tips

  1. Company's website: mission, vision, values (as available), 10-K/Annual Report, media/news/press releases.
    • Not all companies have a "mission/vision/value statement" per se, but you can get a general idea from their website or annual report/10-K (if public) about what they do/who they are, where they want to go, and what they stand for.
  2. ​Information on public companies is much more readily available than info on private companies or subsidiaries
  3. SWOTs may be part of a company's profile and readily available. 

Company Profiles

Sizing the Market

As we discussed in class, looking up the NAICs code for your industry is an important first step as some databases allow you to search by NAICS.  The databases listed to the right under "Databases for Market Research" all have some information or features that could be helpful.  Business Insights Global, in particular, has industry reports that can be helpful.

It's not always easy to find size information for markets, especially on narrow/niche or emerging markets. When that happens, search for Business Source Premier and Nexis Uni to see there are articles that talk about your market. Industry associations often provide estimates. Google is great at picking up news, blog posts, and press releases that may mention specific numbers.

You may also need to infer from broader market data and come up with your own estimates, esp. for new products/services that don't exist yet. Below are tutorials tutorials on how to size a market:

You can use Census data to get information about numbers of potentials customers:
  • Census Business Builder
    • A suite of services that provide selected demographic and economic data from the Census Bureau tailored to specific types of users in a simple to access and use format
  • Census Business and Economy
  • Census Data search
    • You can also directly search for data by region and demographics

American Community Survey

This is another product of the Census Bureau with extensive data about population demographics.

SWOT Analysis in Library Databases

Library databases below may have a readily available SWOT report on select companies. Not all companies have a such a report, and even when there are SWOT reports, these are other people's opinions that you can consult and cite. You should, however, always create your own analysis.

Market and Industry Research

Industry Classifications

When researching industry information, it is helpful to find the NAICS or SIC code for that industry, though all the industry databases also allow a keyword search. You can search some databases by NAICS and/or SIC code to get industry information.

Industry and Trade Associations

An industry association is established to advocate for the industry and associated companies. They collect and provide unique data/articles/reports. Sometimes these sources are on their websites for free.

To find the industry association websites:

  • Do a Google search with keywords followed by "association".
  • Industry profiles in library databases may have a section for related associations. 

Databases for Market Research