29 CFR § 779.215 - General scope of terms.
(a) Under the definition related activities performed for a common business purpose will be a part of the enterprise when they are performed either through “unified operation” or “common control.” It should be noted that these conditions are stated in the alternative. Thus if it is established that the described activities are performed through “common control,” it is unnecessary to show that they are also performed through “unified operation,” although frequently both conditions may exist.
(b) Under the definition the terms “unified operation” and “common control” refer to the performance of the “related activities.” They do not refer to the ownership of the activities. Although ownership may be a significant factor in determining control (see § 779.222), the related activities will be a part of the enterprise even if they are not under common ownership, so long as they are performed for a common business purpose through unified operation or common control. Further, under the definition the terms “unified operation” and “common control” refer to the performance only of the particular related activities and not to other activities which may be performed by the various persons, corporations, or other business organizations, comprising the enterprise. Thus where two or more individual or business organizations perform certain of their activities through unified operation or common control, these activities will be part of a single enterprise, assuming of course they are related activities performed for a common business purpose. Finally, the definition in section 3(r) makes clear that the described activities may be performed through unified operation or common control “in one or more establishments or by one or more corporate or other organizational units.” The Senate Report on the 1966 amendments makes the following comment with respect to this:
Also, the operations through substantial ownership or control of a number of firms engaged in similar types of business activities constitute, in the committee's view, related activities performed through unified operation or common control within the meaning of the definition of enterprise. The fact the firms are independently incorporated or physically separate or under the immediate direction of local management, as in Wirtz v. Hardin, 16 Wage Hour Cases 722 (N.D. Ala.), is not determinative of this question. (Sen. Rept. No. 1487, 89th Congress, 2nd session, page 7.)