private pri‧vate [ˈpraɪvt] adjective [only before a noun]
1. private property, businesses, activities etc are owned or paid for by people and companies, rather than the government:

• They transferred ownership of thousands of companies from the state to the private sector (= the part of the economy not owned by the government ) .

• Investment bankers say that private money should be used for new municipal projects.

private pensions

— privately adverb :

• Joe Sims, a former Justice Department lawyer who now practices privately

• a privately run prison

• privately operated toll roads

2. FINANCE involving something that is sold directly to people or organizations, without being offered openly for anyone to buy:

• The company has raised $50 million in a private placement arranged by Kemper Financial Services.

• Goldman will seek new sources of capital through a private investment offering.

• a private sale of 70 million shares, to be offered to investment institutions at A$2.55 each

— privately adverb :

• The banks will privately place the shares with individual investors.

• He will decide which works will be sold privately and which works will be sold at auction.

3. in private hands not belonging to the government:

• Slovak officials approved proposals to put 200 companies in private hands.

4. in private hands belonging to a member of the public rather than to an organization:

• There are more than 100 million handguns in private hands in the US.

5. go private also turn private if a government-owned organization goes or turns private, it is sold to investors:

• Iberia Airlines will be ready to go private next year.

• Poland's remaining state enterprises have put forward plans to turn private.

6. go private to pay for medical treatment instead of getting it free at a public hospital
7. a private company does not make its shares available for anyone to buy on a stockmarket:

• Cargill, the largest private company in the US, wants to stay that way. Says Mr West, a vice president: `We'll go public (= sell shares on the stockmarket ) the week after snowballs form in hell.'

— privately adverb :

• Cortisol Medical Research Inc., a privately-held (= privately-owned ) drug manufacturer

8. go private if a company with shares on the stockmarket goes private, its owners buy back those shares from existing shareholders so that it becomes privately owned:

• The majority of companies that went private in the last few years will become public again by reselling stock.

9. take a company private if a company's owners take it private, they buy back all shares from existing shareholders:

• The company's chairman plans to take the company private through a buy-out of the 74% of shares he doesn't already own.

10. only for use by one particular person or group, not for everyone:

• a private road

• private accommodation

11. a private meeting, agreement, conversation etc involves only a small number of people and is kept secret:

• Mr. Miscio rose to protest, saying `This is a private meeting'.

• The visit was preceded by a private audience (= a meeting with someone important ) for the chairmen.

— privately adverb :

• He and his lawyers will be permitted to meet privately at the Oakland jail.

* * *

privately UK US /ˈpraɪvətli/ adverb
not said or done officially or publicly: say/acknowledge/admit privately »

Officials privately admitted that the data was unreliable.

speak/meet privately (with sb) »

He met privately with his administrative team late in the day.

ECONOMICS owned or financed by a company or group of people, rather than by the government: »

privately run/operated/managed.


privately funded projects

Financial and business terms. 2012.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Privately — Pri vate*ly (pr[imac] v[asl]t*l[y^]), adv. [1913 Webster] 1. In a private manner; not openly; without the presence of others. [1913 Webster] 2. In a manner affecting an individual; personally; not officially; as, he is not privately benefited.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • privately — index alone (solitary), in person Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • privately — pri|vate|ly [ˈpraıvıtli] adv 1.) with no one else present = in private ▪ I must talk to you privately. 2.) if you feel or think something privately, you do not tell anyone about it ▪ Laura praised the pictures, though she privately thought they… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • privately — adverb 1 with no one else present: Could I speak to you privately? 2 if you feel or think something privately, you do not tell anyone about it (sentence adverb): Privately, Prue felt that the whole exercise was a waste of time. 3 especially BrE… …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

  • privately — pri|vate|ly [ praıvətli ] adverb ** 1. ) in a place where no other people can see or hear you: We wanted to speak privately. a ) used about thoughts or feelings that you do not express: They were privately furious about it. Privately, he hoped… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • privately */*/ — UK [ˈpraɪvətlɪ] / US adverb 1) a) in a place where no other people can see or hear you We wanted to speak privately. b) used about thoughts or feelings that you do not express They were privately furious about it. Privately, he hoped they would… …   English dictionary

  • privately — adverb 1. kept private or confined to those intimately concerned (Freq. 7) it was discussed privately between the two men privately, she thought differently some member of his own party hoped privately for his defeat he was questioned in private… …   Useful english dictionary

  • privately — [[t]praɪvɪtli[/t]] ADV: ADV after v If you buy or sell something privately, you buy it from or sell it to another person directly, rather than in a shop or through a business. → See also private The whole process makes buying a car privately as… …   English dictionary

  • privately — adverb 1) we must talk privately Syn: in secret, secretly, in private, behind closed doors, in camera; in confidence, confidentially, between ourselves, entre nous, off the record; formal sub rosa Ant: publicly 2) …   Thesaurus of popular words

  • privately — [ˈpraɪvətli] adv 1) in a place where no other people can see or hear you We wanted to speak privately.[/ex] 2) used about thoughts or feelings that you do not express Privately, he hoped they would refuse.[/ex] 3) by people who provide money… …   Dictionary for writing and speaking English

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