Introducing OpenCorporates Advanced Search – more powerful than ever before

We’re proud to announce that there is now a more powerful way to search for company data on OpenCorporates. With now over 87 million companies in OpenCorporates, there are frequently many similarly named companies, and it can be sometimes a challenge to find the correct one.

Well, now we’ve taken a significant step in solving this problem. Our many regular users will have noticed an Advanced Search option appearing late last week:
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The powerful search allows you to filter any search query by

(1) Search mode
— match any word in selected fields: The default: useful for when you’re not sure of the complete company name
— match name starting with search query: Useful for when you know the first word of the company name. For instance, searching for “standard chartered” would otherwise also return Chartered Standard LLC, as well as entities relating to the bank of that name

(2) Fields to search
— Company Name
— Other Name: Allows you to search for previous or alternative names for a company.
— Company Number
— Registered Address: Yes, searching by address is now possible!

 (3) Company branches
— including branches: see our new glossary for more info on what a branch is
— only branches
— excluding branches

(4) Nonprofit status:
— including nonprofit: the default
— only nonprofit
— excluding nonprofit

(5) Sorting
— sort by company name
sort by relevance: This is an alpha feature as we’re testing showing company results by assigning the search result an internal score. It prioritises larger companies, and those that are parent companies, and downscores inactive companies and branches. However, this is still experimental – please send us feedback on this to

For the moment, we’re restricting Advanced Search to logged-in users, as some of the features make it (computationally) more expensive to serve, and we think anyone who’s using this is a power user in any case, and likely to be logged in (it’s free to join, of course, and allows deeper searching).

So how does this work in practice? Take a search for ‘Apple’, for example. As a basic search this returns 23,396 results.

If you switch to searching by relevance, Apple Inc

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You’ll notice the Cross sign, which indicates that company has subsidiaries attached to it, and combined with the fact its registered address is in Cupertino (new feature too!) makes it highly likely that it’s the Apple we are looking for.

Upon clicking the link, you’ll see this is indeed true.

advanced search - apple

Let’s have a look at the non-profits feature. Even though the majority of entities in OpenCorporates are for-profit companies, we have tens of millions of nonprofits too, as in most companies nonprofits are incorporated entities that are registered with company registers.

Let’s look for one of the bigger UK charities, Scope. This is just the sort of name that might have been tricky in the past, even if you restrict the search to the UK, as there are many entities with Scope in the name:

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But if we add advanced filters, to only show nonprofits, exclude inactive entities, and match the name starting with the query, we get something much more useful.

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Like this feature? This is all thanks to the efforts of Lukas, Seb and Chris who’ve been working on this for the past few weeks. We would love to hear how you’re using OpenCorporates so give us a shout by filling in this short form.

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