Corporation Service Company

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Corporation Service Company (CSC)
Privately Held Corporation
Industry Registered Agent, Corporate Governance, Corporate Compliance, Domain Name and Intellectual Property Management
Founded Delaware (1899)
Headquarters Wilmington, Delaware, USA
Products Corporate services, matter management, entity management, business licenses, UCC searching and filing, lien portfolio management, electronic document recording, and domain management
Number of employees
2,500+ [1]


Corporation Service Company® (CSC®) is a company that provides business, legal, and financial services and is one of the largest registered agent service companies in the world. According to its website, CSC is the preferred solutions provider for 90% of the Fortune 500®, half of the Best Global Brands (Interbrand®), nearly 10,000 law firms, and more than 3,000 financial organizations.[1]

CSC offers services that help businesses form legal entities and maintain their good standing in thousands of U.S. and international jurisdictions, manage annual reports, business licenses, as well as many other corporate filings. They also provide statutory registered agent services, secured transaction work such as records preparation and management, and the filing and retrieval of lien, judgment, litigation, and other public record information. CSC offers services for secure real estate document preparation and recording in both paper and electronic formats as well as managing corporate domain names, monitoring the Internet for brand abuses, and provides online security assets including SSL certificates and anti-phishing services. They also help screen and clear trademarks in a global market.

Headquartered in Wilmington, Delaware, CSC has offices throughout the U.S., Canada, Europe, and the Asia-Pacific region.[2]


CSC commenced business in 1899. Otho Nowland, then president of Equitable Guarantee & Trust Company, suggested to a young lawyer named Christopher L. Ward that they establish an agency to organize business entities corporations, etc. and act as their registered agent. With an initial investment by Nowland, Ward, and another friend, Willard Jackson, The Delaware Incorporators’ Trust Company was created.[3] A similar company was formed separately by Josiah P. Marvel, an attorney and then-leader of the American Bar Association, The Delaware Bar Association, and the Delaware State Chamber of Commerce.[4]

In 1920, Ward and Marvel combined their two companies under the name Corporation Service Company. Throughout the 1970s, CSC continued to serve only Delaware business entities. The company increased in size, while Delaware's reputation as "The Corporate State" also grew.

From 1980 to 1985, CSC continued to grow. It received a cash infusion from the sale of its subsidiary company, the Delaware Charter Guarantee & Trust Company, which it had acquired in 1977. In 1990, CSC acquired Florida-based Corporate Information Services. This acquisition was the first of many designed to expand CSC's scope beyond the State of Delaware. Between 1989 and 1998, CSC expanded through the acquisitions of nine other service providers, including Prentice Hall Legal & Financial Services in 1995, and Entity Service Group, LLC in 1998.[5]

Bruce R. Winn began serving as CSC’s president in 1997 and its chief executive officer in 1998. Winn was creative and aggressive, set goals and achieved them, according to Daniel R. Butler, whom Winn succeeded. Winn was born in Utah and was inspired by the “last spike” driven between the Central Pacific and Union Pacific railroads in 1869 forming the First Transcontinental Railroad. Each CSC staff member was presented with an inscribed, tangible spike as a symbol of bringing together the many companies CSC acquired in a short amount of time under Winn’s leadership from 1997 to 2010.[2] This same sentiment has carried through to the employees of CSC today.

During the September 11 attacks, the company had offices on the 87th floor of the World Trade Center's South Tower. It was among the few organizations located above the impact zones in either tower to weather the attacks unscathed, as all 60 employees present at the time of the attacks managed to evacuate the tower before the second plane struck.[6]

In 2003, CSC acquired Lexis-Nexis Document Solutions[7] to supplement its Uniform Commercial Code (UCC), secured lending, and motor vehicle services.

In 2010, CSC announced the election of Rodman Ward III as its president and chief executive officer. Ward previously served as a board member for 15 years and is a fourth-generation descendant of one of the company’s founders, Christopher Ward.

CSC continued to expand under Ward’s leadership, and in 2011 acquired MLM Information Services, the industry's foremost corporate tax management services provider. This allowed CSC to cement its position as the industry leader for corporate compliance solutions providing software, services, and guidance to the corporate tax market through acquired subsidiaries, Corptax Inc. and Tax Compliance Inc. Growth for CSC continued in 2012, when they purchased Ingeo Systems, Inc., the nation's top provider of electronic real estate document recording (eRecording) services. The Ingeo purchase allowed CSC to grow in the real estate document recording industry.[8]

In 2013, CSC acquired the corporate domain name and online brand services division of Melbourne IT. The unit operates under a new name, CSC Digital Brand Services, and offers domain name management, trademark searching, phishing protection, secure sockets layer certificates, domain name system services, and new gTLD solutions.[6] This acquisition significantly expanded CSC's global capabilities to act as the partner for companies worldwide seeking to promote and protect their brands online.[9]

In 2014, CSC announced that it had acquired IP Mirror, a Singapore-based provider of corporate domain name registration and online brand protection services.[10] The acquisition of IP Mirror enhanced CSC Digital Brand Services’ ability to provide award-winning service in the Asia-Pacific region, making CSC a truly global company.

CSC acquired several companies in 2015, including Koehler Group.[11] Koehler Group is a Hong Kong-headquartered provider of incorporation, tax, accounting, and trade support services. Koehler Group’s offerings add to CSC’s services and provide CSC with additional business process outsourcing capabilities. The acquisition offered a platform for CSC to continue expansion in the Asia-Pacific region and enlarges the company’s global footprint. CSC currently has offices located throughout North America, Europe, and the Asia-Pacific region.

CSC also made acquisitions in 2016, such as NetNames. NetNamesNN,[12] is a European provider of domain name management and online corporate brand protection and specializes in domain name management, Internet monitoring, digital certificate management, and new gTLD management. Due to this acquisition, CSC has expanded their geographic presence in Europe, and NetNames is the latest of many investments CSC has made in the digital brand space.


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