LinkedIn, with help from BusinessWeek’s CapitalIQ, has added a company directory and related factual information to its business network. It’s not easy to get to the company directory, which is only accessible to LinkedIn users at the moment. One can’t simply go to the LinkedIn search box and type a company name.
You navigate to the company directory via individual employee profiles, as explained on the LinkedIn blog. Once there, however, you can search for companies:
The company profile you see is personalized to your network and contact list to a high degree. It shows you general company details such as locations, revenues, related companies, number of employees, industry categorization, and other factual information. It also shows the most popular employee profiles viewed, as well as new hires and promotions. All of these individuals are shown in terms of their relationship to you and your network.
This is an interesting and potentially valuable re-packaging of LinkedIn’s information. I would imagine that recruiters (already heavy LinkedIn users), startups, salespeople, and the unemployed will gain the greatest benefit from the new company directory.
I would also imagine that the directory will eventually become integrated into LinkedIn more generally so that one of the search options in the main search box will ultimately be “companies.” I would also guess that LinkedIn will also create public versions of its company profiles for SEO purposes.
Here’s more discussion on Techmeme.