You’ve gotten wind of a company with growth and prospect potential, and you’re interested in learning more and want to talk to the owner. How do you find out who they are? UnMask, a leading authority on screening services recommends using a background check as the best and quickest method of identifying a business owner.
Background check companies make it easy to get this information by entering the name of the company, the city, and the state. Subsequently, they retrieve a list of possible matches. Apart from the owner, you’ll see the date of establishment, how many employees the company has, and perhaps, even their annual revenue. Although results aren’t always guaranteed, if the search works, it will save you months of effort.
If this method doesn’t prove helpful, rest assured there are plenty of others. Read on to find out more about them.
State Licensing Data
TV shows and movies will have us believe that business ownership is a murky matter that’s difficult to ascertain. In fact, getting such information is quite straightforward. Every company needs to register with the state where it’s headquartered. In turn, each state has a Secretary of State office with a Corporation Department. Usually, their search feature lets you look a company up by name.
Searching using state licensing data is very effective because you can’t have two companies with the same name, especially in one state. Their records will show the owner, the agent of record, or another company officer with whom you can get in touch. Usually, the office won’t charge any fees for access.
The Chamber of Commerce
The Chamber of Commerce has a member directory on its official site. As they want locals doing more transactions with Chamber members, this directory is publicly accessible. Typically, the company’s profile will include the member’s name. If it’s a smaller company, the owner and the Chamber member are usually the same person.
Most companies have profiles on Dunn & Bradstreet. However, you can expect to have to pay for this information because that’s how they make a profit. While limited information is available for free, you might get lucky. Go to www.dnb.com and look up the name. You will also get information about the year of founding, key contacts, number of staff members, a snapshot of the company, and estimates of their annual revenue.
There are some issues with searching for the owner of a company that you need to know about. If the site you have accessed states that their information should not be used for commercial purposes, you shouldn’t use it for any other purpose.
You might think that your person of interest will never find out you searched for them. However, they could find out you looked them up on specific sites, since the information you uncover may not be available elsewhere. What’s more, some sites publish lists with dummy names to lure people. When you call your person of interest, they’ll know where you got their identifying information.
Usually, the site will say the information shouldn’t be used for commercial purposes because they market it separately to interested parties. It’s important to respect any privacy and legal notices on platforms you use to get data.
Before you begin prospecting online, you should obtain approval from your branch, compliance, or another expert. They will be able to consult you on how to do this legally.
Awards Management System
One last source you can use is the System for Awards Management. It will let you know if the business you’re interested in is a certified government contractor. SAM’s site provides a complex overview of businesses, including the person responsible for negotiations with the government. If the company is small- or medium-sized, this is likely the owner.