Company names of some of the most successful organizations today are just synonymous with their service or product. Google = Search, AirBnB = Accommodation, Medium = Writing, Uber = Ride. The list goes one. But before anyone knew of these companies, what meaning did the name begin with? Here is a list of company names and their origin.
For the favorite fruit of co-founder Steve Jobs and/or for the time he worked at an apple orchard, and to distance itself from the cold, unapproachable, complicated imagery created by other computer companies at the time – which had names such as IBM, DEC, and Cincom.
Originally, “Google” was an accidental misspelling of “googol,” the number 1
followed by 100 zeros (or 10 raised to the power of a 100), a number
which the search company’s founders thought reflected their goal of
amassing and organizing extensive amounts of available information
online. The domain “google.com” was available and the name
Though co-founder Jack Dorsey rejected the name “Twitch,” he looked to the dictionary to find similar words. Once the founders came across “Twitter,” meaning “a short burst
of inconsequential information” and “chirps from birds,” they knew there
was no better name for their social network.
Founder Jeff Bezos renamed the company “Amazon” (from the earlier name of Cadabra.com) after the world’s most voluminous river, the Amazon. He saw
the potential for a larger volume of sales in an online (as opposed to a
bricks and mortar) bookstore. (Alternative: Amazon was chosen to cash in
on the popularity of Yahoo, which listed entries alphabetically).
Sky-Peer-to-Peer, a phrase which described the voice-over-IP service, became the name Skyper, which finally became Skype.
Originally called AirBed&Breakfast. A combination of “airbed” (the
scrappy solution Brian and Joe had to adopt in order to host their first
guests in their very home) and “bed and breakfast” (or “BnB”,
a way of hosting in which guests receive a warmer hospitality than
hotels). As the company gained momentum and popularity, AirBnB began
being used as a catchier contraction of the original
A combination of the Danish “leg godt”, which
means to “play well”. Lego also means “I put together” in Latin,
but Lego Group claims this is only a coincidence and the etymology of the word is entirely
Danish. Years before the little plastic brick was invented, Lego manufactured wooden toys.
Co-founder John Warnock lived in a house in front of the Adobe Creek, which inspired his
Founder Richard Branson started a magazine called Student while still at
school. In his autobiography, Losing My Virginity, Branson says that
when they were starting a business to sell records by mail order, “one
of the girls suggested: ‘What about Virgin? We’re complete virgins at
Facebook’s name comes from the books given to newly enrolled students at U.S. universities to help them get to know one another.
List of various sources:
Wikipedia, 10 Company names and where they come.