Which companies own which companies
February 2, 2005 10:20 PM   Subscribe

Is there a chart that shows what major companies own other companies (preferably constantly updated)? A lot of buyouts / mergers have been taking place lately and I'd like to see how the corporate power is centralized / organized. I also seem to recall a site that mapped power relations between powerful corporate individuals, and that would be of interest as well.
posted by banished to Work & Money (13 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

My personal professional experience researching this stuff is limited to print sources. However, here's a primer I found that ought to help you find info online.

The SEC site is useful as well, although you need to have a little background information before you start searching there.
posted by mudpuppie at 10:32 PM on February 2, 2005

Who Owns What.
posted by Jairus at 10:41 PM on February 2, 2005

I think the site you're referring to that mapped connections between corporate individuals is They Rule. [Flash required]
posted by robbie01 at 10:45 PM on February 2, 2005

Wikipedia's Who owns what
posted by milkrate at 11:33 PM on February 2, 2005

Badcorp also has a listing "Who owns who". It's quite decent, includes a product search function.
posted by Jack Karaoke at 11:35 PM on February 2, 2005

You can always spend a couple hours studying Altria ...
posted by Shane at 4:46 AM on February 3, 2005

('Cuz, ya know, you pretty much can't breathe without Altria making some kind of profit off you... )

...and by the way, Oligopoly Watch is cool in general.)
posted by Shane at 4:49 AM on February 3, 2005

On a side note : TheyRule
posted by XiBe at 5:44 AM on February 3, 2005

On a side note : TheyRule

Oh. My. God. That's brilliant! I clicked on Load Map, then Popular, then Why Harvard doesn't fund alternative medical research ....

Brilliant. Goldmine. Jackpot.
posted by Shane at 6:31 AM on February 3, 2005

They Rule has been around for some time, and I'm not sure if the connections are still valid, but as everyone here suggests: It Rules
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 6:53 AM on February 3, 2005

Now that everyone's done answering the question, I'll give an example.

Look, Cingular (co-owned by BellSouth) bought AT&T Wireless, but AT&T retained the name "AT&T Wireless" so that they could bring out cellphone service under that name. The plan was to use Sprint's towers / service to do so. But then SBC bought AT&T (or agreed to). SBC has a big investment in Cingular, so now it looks like AT&T Wireless' new service will come out thru SBC, and use Cingular's towers / service. So though Cingular just went thru the very expensive transition period to get rid of AT&T Wireless, chances are they're going to have a new competitor, that uses their backend hardware, that's called AT&T Wireless.
posted by zpousman at 7:21 AM on February 3, 2005

Remember those commercials in the early-to-mid-80s (I'm talking in the USA here) that'd end with "We're Beatrice"? Whatever happened to Beatrice? Did it get renamed, bought out, or what? There was a period there where stand-up comics would crack about Beatrice's buying the world, and today I have no idea what the deal is....
posted by kimota at 1:04 PM on February 3, 2005

Catching up on my mefi reading on the weekend, so no one is probably reading this thread anymore, but, I too, was fascinated/horrified by the Beatrice ads back then...
I did a quick search on the web and found this:

Every Milken-funded [corporate] takeover resulted in the sell-off of divisions or units ... A striking case in point was the breakup of the Beatrice Companies, an ungainly agglomeration that combined, with little logic, Avis car rentals, Coca-Cola bottling, Playtex brassieres, the manufacture of tampons, along with the food processineg that had once formed its core business. After its parts were sold to other companies, Beatrice was a much smaller firm operating more sensibly in the food, cheese and meat business (Toffler pp. 52-53).
posted by j at 8:43 AM on February 5, 2005

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