This article has the purpose of instructing foreigners interested in Brazil on how to collect some basic information about Brazilian companies.
Information regarding a company's background can be the first step for foreign companies planning to establish in Brazil. Having that in mind, we've made a list of the five main institutions that provide access to some basic information, such as telephone number, address and CNJP.
These information are important because once you have them, it gets easier to have access regarding the company's operation and profile. The inconvenient is that all information is provided in Portuguese only.
1. TeleListas: Name and Address
TeleListas is the Brazilian yellow pages. It has a printed and an online version that provides telephone number and address of legal entities.
If you fill in the name of the company, you will have access to the address and telephone number of each branch the company owns. You can also filter according to the service line you are interested in. For example, let's say you are moving to São Paulo and knows you will need a real estate agent. You fill in “real estate agent” in the key-word box and you will see a list with all real estate agents working in that selected area. The website also provides a map with directions to the location.
2. Registro.br: CNPJ
When all the information you have about the company you are interested in is the website address, Registro.br can provide you some information for free. Registro.br is the institution behind all domains in Brazil. The creation of a domain requires a series of information about the company, including CNPJ.
To have access to these information you must go to Registro.br and right on the home page, you will see a box where you must fill in the website address. Click on “Mais informações” and then “Whois”. You will have access to the CNPJ, the name of the person in charge of the company and the e-mail address.
It is important to know that, as a Brazilian institution, Registro.br only works with Brazilian domains.
3. Sintegra: Inscrição Estadual
Now that you have the CNPJ number, you can get Inscrição Estadual, which is a number corresponding to the taxpayer registration on ICMS. For that, you can access Sintegra (Sistema Integrado de Informações sobre Operações Interestaduais com Mercadorias e Serviços) website, a system provided by the department of finance.
The next step is to choose the state where the company is located and then fill in the box with the CNPJ number. Do not type the first digit, neither dots, slashes or spaces. You will then have access to some information such as Inscrição Estadual, address and business activity.
4. Receita Federal: Business Activity
The information provided by Receita Federal is very similar to the one provided by Sintegra. The difference is that Receita Federal provides more information regarding business activity.
To have access to these information, go to Receita Federal website, click on Empresa and then CNPJ. You will see the option “Consultas – Emissão de Comprovante de Inscrição e de Situação Cadastral”, then fill in the CNPJ.
5. Serasa Experian: More Detailed Information
If all the previous information still are not enough for what you are looking for, you can hire one of the many services provided by Serasa Experian, a company specialized in credit analysis and information, offering support to business enterprises.
Serasa Experian offers different bundle options, according to the information required. It is possible to have access to information related to invoicing and overdues. The website is very complete and it is possible to find valuable information, however, every access is charged and it is not cheap. Just to give an idea, a bundle of 10 access regarding invoicing information in English costs BRL 430,00 per month.