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STRATEGY 310 - Competing in the Global Business Environment: Global company research

Prof. Reuben Hurst Winter 2020

International company profiles

Corporate filings - US Companies

U.S. SEC EDGAR (Electronic Data Gathering, Analysis, and Retrieval System) ; 1996 - present

  • Required regulatory filings of U.S. domestic public company and foreign private issuers offering securities on U.S. exchanges from 1996 to the present
  • Review company filed registration statements, prospectuses, proxy statements and other periodic reports such as the annual 10-K,  the quarterly 10-Q  and the 20-F for foreign issuers. 
  • Find out about a company’s strategic goals, expansion plans, financial performance, significant litigation and other major developments
  • For optimal use, review Researching Public Companies through EDGAR: A Guide for Investors 


Access to U.S. SEC filings are also available through Ross company databases


Business filings with the U.S. fifty state secretary offices. LLRX

  • Access to available business filings varies by state
  • Use to verify if a company is registered to do business in a state or review incorporation records
  • Filings might provide additonal information about a private company

Franchise Disclosure Statements

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) requires that all franchises provide a Franchise Disclosure Document (FDD) so that the prospective franchisees understand the investment risks and obligations. A few large franchises are exempt from filing. 

This FTC Franchise Rule (16 CFR Parts 436 and 437)  requires the FDD to contain 23 specific items of information about the offered franchise, its officers, and other franchisees.  Required disclosure topics include:      

  • franchise’s litigation history, past and current franchisees and their contact information
  • any exclusive territory that comes with the franchise
  • assistance the franchiser provides franchisees
  • cost of purchasing and starting up a franchise
  • financial statements if the franchiser makes representations about the financial performance of franchise

For a summation, see Entrepreneur Magazine’s article on how to read a financial disclosure statement.

Twenty-one U.S. States have the authority to regulate franchises and a few of them offer access to the actual FDD filings:

Must know the exact legal franchise name to retrieve FDDs.  Consult the International Franchise Association’s identifier 

Corporate Filings - Global companies

Every country and securities exchange has different company financial disclosure requirements. To locate filings and documents:

Australian Securities Exchange (ASX)

  1. Search the company by ASX Code or company name and select the Time frame.
  2. Identify Annual Reports based on the description shown in the Headline column.

SEDAR - Canadian Securities Administrators

        System for Electronic Document Analysis and Retrieval, the electronic filing system for the disclosure documents of public                                        companies and investment funds across Canada.  1997-present

New York Stock Exchange (NYSE)

  1. Click ListingsListing Directory, then click NYSE.
  2. Click the Name tab to find a company by alphabet.  Also searchable by RegionIndustryListing Date, or Issue Type.
  3. Click the company name to open its profile.
  4. Click the SEC Filings tab and change Filing Type to Annual Reports.

 London Stock Exchange

 Hong Kong Stock Exchange (HKEx)

  1. Mouse over Investment Service Centre on the top menu bar, select HKExnews
  2. Under Listed Company Information, click on Advanced Search, enter Stock Code or Stock Nameand change Document Type to Financial Statements.

 Singapore Exchange Limited (SGX)

  1. Mouse over Company Disclosure and Catalodge - By Company.
  2. Click Annual / Financial Reports.
  3. Select Company Name and Document Type.

 Shanghai Stock Exchange (English)

 Shenzhen Stock Exchange

    1. Click 信息披露 on the top menu bar, further click 上市公司公告.
    2. Enter stock code (e.g. 000055 方大集团), select annual reports or quarterly reports, enter date range, click the Confirm button.