You can look up business information for companies in South Carolina through the website of the Secretary of State, and its Business Entities Online services page. Below we’ll walk through the steps for doing this, and show you some additional resources you might not know about.
There are any number of reasons you might need this information. It’s absolutely critical when performing due diligence and for Know Your Client (KYC) purposes. If you’re only performing these kinds of searches occasionally, South Carolina’s search portal allows you to find a very basic level of information quickly and easily. If you’re searching records like these in high numbers, there are some tools you’ll want to know about, but we’ll come back to that in just a moment.
You can find the Business Name Search page here. The landing page looks like this:
The search interface is very basic, only allowing you to restrict your search to records that begin with, contain, or are an exact match for your search term.
When you perform the search, you’ll be directed to the results page, which looks like this:
The results are sorted by company name in alphabetical order. You cannot reverse the default order, or sort by another field. Due to the lack of search filters, in addition to active companies, you’ll also see former names of businesses, and companies that are no longer active.
On the results page, you’ll see limited information – the company’s name (flagged as a former name when that’s the case), the date it was formed, the type of business (its legal structure), its current status, and the state in which it was incorporated.
Clicking anywhere on the row for any of the records will bring you to the details page for that business. Those pages look like this:
There’s a little more information here; you can view the name and contact information for the Registered Agent, important dates, and – towards the bottom – documents on file with the office.
Those documents are not available without creating an account (a fairly time consuming process in itself), and they’re only available for purchase at cost.
Need More Information, More Quickly?
South Carolina only offers minimal business information, and lacking any filters, their search interface could make for cumbersome searches. If you need to search for hundreds – or even thousands – of these records each month, this would quickly consume a lot of time. Furthermore, Secretary of State data is different from one state to another, so combining and integrating data from multiple states is complex.
Cobalt Intelligence gives you the ability to quickly access Secretary of State business data from South Carolina and all other states via API. If you’re looking for a solution that your engineering team can implement, try it here and let us show you how we can help. If you’re technically minded, watch this short video to see the more advanced features in action.