The Methodology

The “Base de Datos de Grandes Empresas en Argentina / Big Companies in Argentina Database BDGA/BCAD – PICT 2015/3273” contains information on the 200 largest Argentine and foreign companies registered in Argentina. The variable used to define size was the integrated capital stock, which allowed us to create a homogeneous and long-term series. The information systematized between 1913 and 1971 includes the country of origin, date of creation, organizational form, main activity, type of investment (greenfield, brownfield, and joint-venture), capital stock, reserves, and revenues, as well as other data such as the composition of the boards of directors, in the selected years: 1913, 1923, 1930, 1937-8, 1944, 1959-60, 1970-1). On the site, you can find the main information about the companies for each benchmark year.

The information comes from the processing of the following primary sources.

To determine the domestic or foreign status of the firms, we considered not only equity ownership but also the composition of the board of directors and managerial control of the firm. The identification of foreign companies in 1970-71 was based on the data provided by Central Bank Circular B 1150, which lists the foreign companies registered in the country in 1974, following the provisions of Law 20,557/73 on foreign investment.

The information on each firm was completed through a nominal analysis based on different documentary archives, published and unpublished sources located in local and foreign repositories.

Details of the references used can be found in Publications.

Each firm was assigned an alphanumeric code for easy identification in different years. Companies whose corporate name/denomination is in English or French and Spanish can be searched by either name.

The database can be searched by company name, code, date of creation, nationality, activity, and capital stock in dollars. The search can be performed in a given year of data collection, and companies can be identified by origin, capital, and activity in each selected year. It is also possible to search for a company by name or code and follow its evolution during the whole period, in each of the proposed benchmarks years.

Concerning the activity carried out by the companies, it was decided to maintain what was declared by the firms on the occasion of the registration. This explains why some of the entries are in English and others are very long, as they appear in the source. This criterion responds to the intention of making available all the useful information for characterizing the company. In the columns adjacent to the description of the activity, we have classified them according to the categories proposed by the International Standard Industrial Classification of All Economic Activities, Rev.4 (ISIC. Rev. 4), in English known as the International Standard Industrial Classification of All Economic Activities (ISIC), proposed by the United Nations Statistical Commission.


A Agriculture, livestock, forestry, and fishing
B Mining and quarrying
C Manufacturing
D Electricity, gas, steam and air-conditioning supply
E Water supply; sewage disposal
F Construction
G Wholesale and retail trade
H Transport and storage
I Accommodation and food service activities
J Information and communication
K Financial and insurance activities
L Real estate activities


The detailed structure with the description of the activities by branch or division can be found on the United Nations website:

The exchange rates and quotations provided on the site were used. As shown in the source, the exchange rate corresponding to the year of publication of the balance sheet was used.

Despite the hard work done over five years, there is the possibility of detecting omissions or errors, which we can correct as the data is revised or other users send us their comments. So don’t hesitate to get in touch with us when you have comments or suggestions regarding the information on the site.

Citation format: Data obtained from Big Companies in Argentina Database, Norma Lanciotti & Andrea Lluch (2022), PICT 2015/3273, Agencia Nacional de Promoción Científica y Tecnológica, Argentina (

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