Business Ownership and Operation


A business is always owned by someone. This can just be one person, or thousands.
A business can have a number of different types of ownership, and this depends on the
aims and objectives of the owners.

Organisation aims

Depends whether the organization is in the

Private sector – organizations owned and controlled by private individuals or groups of
private individuals or

Public sector – organizations owned and controlled by Government
(DO not confuse public sector with public limited companies (PLCs). PLCs are owned by
private individuals through shareholders and therefore are part of the PRIVATE SECTOR)

Private sector aims

An aim or objective is something the organization wishes to achieve within a set period
of time.

e.g. to increase profits by 15% in the next 12 months

to survive the first year of trading

An objective it is a target for those in the business to work towards.

Most businesses aim to make profit for their owners.
Profits may not be the major objective, but in order to survive a business will need make
a profit in the long term.

Some organisations however will be ‘not-for-profit’, such as charities. Their aims may be
about survival and providing a service for the people it supports.

Public sector aims

Organisations owned by government often focus on providing a service for the group it
focuses on.

Private sector business types

The main types of business ownership are:

Sole trader
Limited companies – both private and public limited companies

Each organisation has different rules and regulations dealing with ownership and the way
that profits and losses are dealt with.