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Company vs. Factory: What's the Difference?

Edited by Janet White || By Harlon Moss || Updated on November 12, 2023
Company refers to a business organization that sells goods or services. Factory refers to a building or set of buildings where goods are manufactured or assembled.

Key Differences

A company is a business entity engaged in commercial, industrial, or professional activities. It can be involved in various aspects like sales, marketing, and management. A factory, on the other hand, is a physical location specifically designed for manufacturing goods.
Companies can range from service providers to product manufacturers, encompassing a wide range of business activities. Factories are primarily focused on the production aspect of a business, dealing with the actual creation or assembly of products.
The term 'company' refers to an organization and its operations as a whole, which may include administration, finance, human resources, and more. 'Factory' specifically refers to the production site, which is often just one part of a company’s operations.
Employees in a company can have diverse roles including management, sales, finance, etc. In a factory, the workforce is typically involved in manufacturing, including machine operators, assembly line workers, and quality control.
A company represents the entire business entity, including its brand, market presence, and corporate identity. A factory represents the industrial side of a business, focused on production and manufacturing efficiency.

Comparison Chart


Business organization selling goods or services
Place for manufacturing or assembling goods


Wide range of business activities
Focused on production and manufacturing


Includes various departments and functions
Primarily production and manufacturing facilities

Employment Roles

Diverse, including management, finance, etc.
Mainly manufacturing and production roles

Business Aspect

Represents the overall business entity
Represents the industrial, production aspect

Company and Factory Definitions


A group formed to conduct business.
The company launched a new product line.


A building where goods are produced.
The factory produces electronic components.


A commercial business.
The company has offices in three countries.


A site for producing goods in large quantities.
The factory employs hundreds of workers.


A legally recognized organization in business.
The company is listed on the stock exchange.


A place for assembling products.
They toured the car manufacturing factory.


An organization engaged in commercial activities.
She works for a multinational company.


A facility with machinery for manufacturing.
The factory operates 24/7 to meet demand.


Entity offering products or services.
Their company is known for excellent customer service.


A place where products are assembled.
The new model is assembled in the factory.


A group of persons
A company of scientists.


A building or group of buildings in which goods are manufactured; a plant.


One's companions or associates
Moved in fast company.
Is known by the company she keeps.


See factory ship.


A guest or guests
Had company for the weekend.


A business establishment for commercial agents or factors in a foreign country.


The source of prolific production
A rock group that was a hit-tune factory.
A motel that served as an illegal drug factory.


The position or state of being a factor.


A trading establishment, especially set up by merchants working in a foreign country.


A building or other place where manufacturing takes place.
History has shown that, even without cheap labor, factories run perfectly well.


A police station.


A device or process that produces or manufactures something.


A factory farm.
Chicken factory; pig factory


(programming) In a computer program or library, a function, method, etc. which creates an object.


Having come from the factory in the state it is currently in; original, stock.
See how there's another layer of metal there? That's not factory.


A house or place where factors, or commercial agents, reside, to transact business for their employers.


The body of factors in any place; as, a chaplain to a British factory.


A building, or collection of buildings, appropriated to the manufacture of goods; the place where workmen are employed in fabricating goods, wares, or utensils; a manufactory; as, a cotton factory.


A plant consisting of buildings with facilities for manufacturing


What is a company?

A company is a legal entity formed by a group of individuals to engage in and operate a business—commercial or industrial—enterprise.

Can a company own property?

Yes, a company can own property, enter into contracts, and incur liabilities.

Is a company always for-profit?

No, there are not-for-profit or non-profit companies focused on social, educational, charitable, or other activities without the profit motive.

How does a company differ from a business?

A company is a legal entity; a business is a broader term that refers to the activities or operations in which a company or individual engages.

How is a company structured?

It typically has a hierarchical structure with roles like directors, managers, and employees.

What are the types of companies?

Common types include sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability company (LLC), and corporation.

What is the main purpose of a company?

The main purpose is to conduct business activities, which can range from providing services to manufacturing products, to earn profits.

What is a multinational company?

A multinational company operates in multiple countries beyond its home country.

Can a company be dissolved?

Yes, through a process called liquidation or dissolution.

Can a company be a single person?

Yes, a single person can form a company, often referred to as a sole proprietorship.

What safety concerns are associated with factories?

Factories often deal with safety concerns like hazardous materials, machinery accidents, and ergonomic issues.

Can a factory be mobile?

Rarely. Most factories are stationary due to the heavy machinery and infrastructure required.

Can a service company have a factory?

Yes, if they produce physical goods or components as part of their service offerings.

What is a factory?

A factory is a building or complex where workers manufacture goods or operate machines processing one product into another.

Can a factory belong to a service sector?

No, factories are typically associated with the industrial or manufacturing sectors.

What is a smart factory?

A smart factory uses advanced technologies like IoT, AI, and robotics to enhance manufacturing processes.

How has technology impacted factories?

Technology has greatly increased efficiency, automation, and safety in factories.

Are all factories automated?

Not all. Some factories have extensive automation, while others may rely more on manual labor.

What is the difference between a factory and a workshop?

Factories are larger and more automated, while workshops are smaller and often more artisanal or manual.

Do factories contribute to pollution?

Many factories contribute to environmental pollution, though modern regulations and technologies aim to reduce this impact.
About Author
Written by
Harlon Moss
Harlon is a seasoned quality moderator and accomplished content writer for Difference Wiki. An alumnus of the prestigious University of California, he earned his degree in Computer Science. Leveraging his academic background, Harlon brings a meticulous and informed perspective to his work, ensuring content accuracy and excellence.
Edited by
Janet White
Janet White has been an esteemed writer and blogger for Difference Wiki. Holding a Master's degree in Science and Medical Journalism from the prestigious Boston University, she has consistently demonstrated her expertise and passion for her field. When she's not immersed in her work, Janet relishes her time exercising, delving into a good book, and cherishing moments with friends and family.

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