Posted in Blog  
  on Mar 10, 2015

How To Find the Owner of a Business

It is easy to find the owner of a large business. They are often required to have their contact information displayed prominently in some way so that the knowledge becomes public. For small businesses, however, knowing who actually owns the business can sometimes be difficult to find. That's when knowing how to find the owner of a business becomes a useful skill. The easiest way to begin is to just contact the business and ask who the owner of it happens to be. Calling the company, stopping by in person, or sending an email with a question of ownership will often result in the information that has been requested.

1. Try Google.

The asked and answered algorithm changes that Google have made allow for direct questions to receive direct answers. Using a basic search to ask about the ownership of the business that you're wondering about. You might just receive the answer you need as the top search result. Similar results can be achieved through other search engines, but displayed in different ways.

2. Take a Look at the Company's Website.

Many small businesses will list their ownership within the “About Us” or “Contact Us” pages of their website. Of course this won't work for a business that doesn't have a website, but is a common way to find out who the owner of any particular business happens to be that requires no personal contact. If the information is not on the website itself, you may find it within the WHOIS information from the domain registration. Sometimes this information has been made private, but the WHOIS register is a public record.

 

3. Ask the Better Business Bureau.

A business doesn't have to be a member of the BBB for the organization to have information about them. If there is information about the business, you will want to keep in mind that the contact information may not be the business owner. You may also want to look at the date on the file of the business because it may not be accurate any more.

4. Speak with Your Local Department of Revenue.

Many states have a registry of businesses that have a valid license. This information often includes the address of the business, the individuals or partners that own the business, and any complaints that may have been made about the conduct of that business. Sometimes this information is even available online with a simple search.

5. Use Commercial Resources to Conduct a Search.

If your efforts are not paying off, then commercial resources may be able to locate the information that you need. Hiring a private detective may not be cost effective, but it will usually result in the information that is required. Commercial databases are also available through subscription services that will provide a low-cost option to locate the needed information.

 

6. Ask Somebody.

Although the answers that are received may not always be 100% reliable, a question and answer service like ChaCha can provide fast answers to the questions that you have. Just text in the question or submit it online and you'll receive a response from a real person in just seconds. This also works in your local community. If you happen to be out and about, just ask the neighboring business owners if they know who the owner of the business happens to be. Not only will the businesses help, but you'll get the chance to market yourself if you want as well.

7. Schedule an Appointment with Your Local Licensing Board or Commission.

Many local jurisdictions require businesses to report on their activities to an oversight board, committee, or commission. Schedule time to speak with the local oversight agency to discuss who may be the owner of the small business you're researching. Sometimes this information is privacy protected, but often it is not.

8. Use a Skip Tracer.

If every other method of trying to find the owner of a business has failed, then consider hiring a skip tracer. Most will provide you with a refund if they are unable to locate the information that you need. The costs of this, especially if you're trying to find an owner for marketing purposes, is usually prohibitive, but the results are generally guaranteed. Knowing how to find the owner of a business can help you to accomplish your goals. Use these steps to find the information that you need and one of them will provide you the information if it is available somewhere.


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