What is the largest business/company without a major official web presence/website?

Pretty much what the OP says. By large business/company I have in mind something with name recognition at the very least across a couple of states if not an entire country.

Would you believe this is the website of the eighth largest company in the world?

Yes, it is a website, but only just barely. :stuck_out_tongue:

Holy shit, that’s an amazing find. That is really unbelievable.

That actually makes sense seeing as Buffet has a well known disdain for all things showoffy and flashy and such.

That being said, it doesn’t answer the question I asked, well it kind of does. That is the official web site for Berkshire/Hathaway and given what I said about Buffet I don’t know that it’s simplicity and bareness is really astonishing or surprising.

So what is the largest company/business in the world not to have ANY offical web site?

Well, Berkshire is a conglomerate that owns many businesses with sizeable websites, e.g. Geico. They do no business with anyone directly, so there is no reason for them to have any web presence.

I would be shocked if any Fortune 500 company was totally devoid of any web presence. A lot of them will have a minor presence for no other reason than they want to get certain domain names so that unsavory sorts can’t use the domain to hurt the company’s good name.

Just based on a random lark, a company I’m aware of “Holberg Industries” has around $10 billion a year in revenue and over 20,000 employees and I can’t find any public website for them at all.

I see that Holberg Industries is just a holding company. I’m not sure what the 20,000 employees represents. But you can search on APCOA, one of their major holdings, and see that has a web presence.

I’m going with the Mafia.

It’s possible to register a domain name and not use it for a website. Nobody’s forcing them to open port 80.

Seeing as the Mafia is composed of families who operate separately from each other, and therefore don’t pool their earnings, I doubt they would crack the Top 1000 companies, let alone the Top 500. Now if you had said the Mexican drug cartels, they might be the winners.

Well, they wouldn’t even have a port to open necessarily. You can just register a domain name without buying hosting or having any sort of hosting services, in which case you would just be sitting on the name itself.

But it looks like in practice even most holding companies in the Fortune 500 establish a minor web presence.

Right…but I think the largest business without a web presence is likely to be a holding company precisely because they have no real customer relationships with anyone directly, but only through their holdings, and thus are unlikely to require a web presence. For private, closely held concerns, the owners may not even want the name/existence of the holding company to be widely known so they would actively desire no web presence.

Berkshire-Hathaway is a holding company as well, while it was originally a small textile firm (that became a vehicle for Buffet’s many acquisitions), I don’t think they’ve actually operated that business for at least 25 years.

I can’t believe I bothered, but here goes:

I wrote a shell script to look for web sites that had the name of all Fortune 500 companies in their domain. As expected, almost all the companies have registered domains to match their names and have live websites. For the few companies that my script couldn’t find a site for, I manually searched and sure enough, there was a web site out there.

Except for one: Hertz Global Holdings Inc. (#315)

Wait a minute? How can Hertz not have a site? It does, but “Hertz Corporation” is a subsidiary of “Hertz Global Holdings”. The only presence the latter has is on its subsidiary’s site: http://www.hertz.com/rentacar/abouthertz/index.jsp?targetPage=investorrelations.jsp

There’s information on the site about its subsidiaries, but virtually no information specific to the parent company. Other holding companies, even Berkshire Hathaway, have some sort of front, but Hertz Global Holding somewhat stands out.

If you think that counts, then as far as I can tell all Fortune 500 companies have some sort of Web presence.

Except the Fortune 500 list is of public companies. Perhaps there are large private companies without a web presence.

According to Forbes, the largest private companies in the US are Cargill, Koch Industries, Mars, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Bechtel, Publix, Love’s Travel Stops, Ernst & Young, C&S Wholesale Grocers and US Foods. All have websites, which makes sense as each needs to communicate with prospective employees and customers.

Not to be snarky, but if we’re going to list the companies that do have web sites, we’re going to be here a while…

True, but under the rules of some registries, registering a domain without actually using may be forbidden or may make it easier for a third party to challenge the registration.

I think our best bet are holding companies. They themselves have no customers per se, and if they are privately held, don’t particularly have a need to communicate with the outside.

Here’s a good one: Murdock Holding Company, ranked 30 in Forbes list of largest private companies (2006). They don’t appear to have any sort of web site of their own, though of course, their holdings (Dole) do.

In Forbes’s largest private companies list, it’s the largest that doesn’t have a website.

Just don’t do what investment advisors Dillon Edwards did: http://www.tressugar.com/SNL-Skit-Clownpenisfart-1965732