No one has said that Americans will never use the word “they” when referring to a single company or to a single group within a company. If the word “they” is used, it will be used with a plural verb. It’s basically just a simple matter of grammatical agreement with the form of the noun: singular noun + singular verb vs plural noun/pronoun + plural verb.
It would not be unusual to see an American speaker of English write something like this (and I suspect a Brit would have no problem with it either):
The [color=green]board of directors [color=green]is meeting tomorrow morning. [color=darkblue]They [color=darkblue]plan to discuss a number of pressing issues, including whether or not to replace the CEO.
board = grammatically singular
they = grammatically plural
As you know, the word “they” is also sometimes used to refer back to a singular noun even when the sense of the word “they” remains singular. But even in that sort of situation, the verb used is plural. It’s just a matter of grammatical agreement based on the form of the noun/pronoun used.
- Someone [color=green]keeps calling me in the middle of the night, but they never [color=darkblue]say anything – they just [color=darkblue]hang up as soon as I answer.
[size=75]“One man alone can be pretty dumb sometimes, but for real bona fide stupidity, there ain’t nothin’ can beat teamwork.” ~ Edward Abbey[/size]