Business English- Describing Companies

Level: Intermediate

Topic: Profession, work or study

Grammar Topic: General

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Type: Lesson Plans

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Lesson Plan Text

Describing companies from different countries

Choose one of the companies below that you know quite well and describe it until your partner  
guesses which one you are talking about. Then discuss if they agree with what your description.

Amazon.com
Avon
Boeing
Caterpillar
Citigroup
Coca Cola
Costco 
Dell
DuPont
Estee Lauder
ExxonMobil
FedEx
Gap
GE
Gillette 
GM
Goodyear
Google
Hallmark
Harley-Davidson
Hershey’s
Hertz
HJ Heinz
IBM
Intel
Kellogg’s
Kodak
MAN
Mattel
Microsoft
Motorola
Nike
Northwest
Pfizer
Procter and Gamble
Samsonite
Starbucks
Subway
Tiffany
Wal-Mart
Xerox

Ajinomoto
Asahi Shimbun
Bridgestone 
Canon
Citizen
Dentsu
Fast Retailing 
(Uniqlo etc)
Fujitsu
Hitachi
JAL
Kao
Kenwood
Kikkoman
Kirin
Komatsu
Muji
NEC
Nintendo
Nissan
Nissin
Nomura
NTT
Pentax
Pentel
Ricoh
Roland
Sekisui
Sharp
Shimano 
Shiseido
Softbank
Sony
Subaru
Suzuki
Tomy
Toray
Toshiba
Wacoal
YKK
Yamaha

AXA
Alcatel
BNP Paribas
BNP Parisbas
Bic
Canal +
Carrefour
Cartier
Chanel
Christian Dior
Danone
Lafarge
LVMH (Louis 
Vuitton Moey 
Hennesey) 
L’Oreal
Michelin
Paul
Printemps
Renault
Total
Vivendi

Adidas
Allianz
BASF
Bayer
BMW
Continental
DHL
Grundig
Hugo Boss
Leica
Lufthansa
Mercedes Benz
Nivea
Porsche
SAP
Siemans
Stabilo
T-Mobile
Triumph
VW/ Audi
Wella
Zeiss

Written by Alex Case for UsingEnglish.com © 2011

BAE Systems
BP
Burberry
Dunlop
Dyson 
Foster and Partners
GlaxoSmithKline
Harrods
JCB
Land Rover
Parker
Pearson
Raleigh 
Reuters
Tesco
Virgin Atlantic
Vodafone
Wedgewood

Diadora
Caritas
Olivetti
Beretta
Pirelli 
Fiat/ Ferrari
Gucci
Bulgari
Pirelli
Vespa
Iveco
Benetton

Adecco
Bally
Credit Suisse
Logitech
Nestle
Novartis
Roche
Schindler
Swarovski
Swatch
Vitorinox

Astra Zeneca
Electrolux
Ericsson
H&M
Husqvarna
IKEA
Saab
Securitas
Skanska
Tetra Pak
Volvo 

Daewoo
Hite
Hyundai
Kia
Kumho- Asiana
LG
Lotte
NHN
Orion
Samsung 

DAF
Heineken
ING
KLM
Phillips
Royal Dutch Shell
Shell
TNT
Unilever 

Hutchinson 
-Whampoa
Hang Seng
Golden Harvest
HSBC
South China-
Morning Post
Cathy Pacific
Amoy

Four Seasons
IMAX
Labatts
Sun Life 
Research in Motion
Thomson-Reuters

Andersen
Carlsberg
Bang and Olufsen
LEGO
Maersk

Camper
Zara
Seat
Telefonica
Banco Santander

Wipro
Hindustan Times
Infosys
Kingfisher
Tata

BHP Billiton
Macquarie
Quantas
Foster’s Group

Gazprom
Tupolev
Rosneft
Aeroflot 

Efes
Arcelik
Cumhuriyet

Guinness
AIB
Ryan Air

Lenovo
Tsingtao
Cosco

Mr Minit
Godiva
Agfa

Singha
Jim Thompson

Acer
Eva Airways

Varig
Petrobras

Petronas
Proton

Finnair
Nokia

De Beers
SAB Miller

Manila Times
San Miguel

Do the same, but using the phrases on the next page to help you.

Written by Alex Case for UsingEnglish.com © 2011

Useful phrases to talk about companies

Its HQ/ headquarters/ head office is in…
It has an office/ a branch/ a factory/ a plant in…
It produces/ manufactures/ makes…
It a/ an … company (but it is owned by a/ an …. company)
It sells/ distributes…
It provides/ offers…
In this country, it…
It’s a multinational company
It does most/ a lot of business in…
Its main business is…
It has a subsidiary which…
Its (main) competitors (in this country) are…
It’s a market leader
It was in the news (recently) because…
It’s the largest/ second largest company in…
It was set up/ founded…
It operates in…
It has … employees (in…)
It has … subsidiaries (which…)
It is owned by…
It’s a privately-owned company (= limited company)/ publically-owned company (= PLC/ public 
corporation)/ government-owned company/ partnership
It exports/ imports/ distributes…
It’s a wholesaler/ retailer/ manufacturer/ miner/ distributor/ technology company/ 
telecommunications company/ conglomerate
Its most famous product (in this country) is…
The CEO/ Managing Director/ Chairman/ founder/ owner is…

Vocabulary question and discussion questions

What countries do the firms above come from? (Each box is one country)/ What are the nation-
ality adjectives for those countries (so that you can say “It is a/ an ____________ company”)?

Are there any companies which are too unimportant to be included on the list?

Are there any other companies which should be included, e.g. from your sector or country?

Were you surprised by the number of companies or lack of companies from some of the coun-
tries?

Use the phrases above to describe companies which are not on the list. Can your partner guess 
which you are talking about?

Use the phrases above to describe your own company.

Written by Alex Case for UsingEnglish.com © 2011