How 13 Great Brands Picked Their Unique Company Names

Unique Company Names

When you are out to find unique company names for your business, you will need inspiration from a variety of sources to be able to come up with really cool business names. We’ll cover some we find super cool and unique in their own way.

Some successful companies, which you have heard about, have not only found unique business names but also have used unique ways to be able to come up with such names. Let’s take a look.

1. Google
The worldwide popular name Google came from the term googol, meaning 1 followed by a hundred zeros. It is funny how a name that began as a joke between the founders of the company Larry Page and Sergey Brin turned into a reality soon. The joke was on how much information their invented search engine could search – in other words, googol of information. The name became a reality when the founders gave a presentation in front of an angel investor who later made a check to them using the word Google.

2. Cisco
Many people have a lot of theories about the name Cisco while the story is quite different and simpler than these theories. The name is merely short for San Francisco while the company’s logo is akin to Golden Gate Bridge’s suspension cables. Taking a long attribute like San Francisco based company and shortening it to make it more memorable and unique is a great way to find a perfect name.

3. Skype
Skype was first named as “Sky-Peer-to-Peer” and then to Skyper which was eventually abridged to become Skype. This again shows how shorter names are more brandable and can help customers remember the company name with ease.

4. Hotmail
Hotmail – the name which is now used in almost every household and company with an internet connection has quite an interesting story behind it which strangely does not have anything “hot” to do with it. When the founders Jack Smith and Sabeer Bhatia came up with the inspiration of checking e-mail on web interface, they were basically seeking for a name with the ending “mail”. The reason they decided to go for “hotmail” was due to the letters “html” – which represented HTML programming language that have been used to create their innovation.

5. Yahoo
A word which was first used by the author of Gulliver’s Travels, Jonathan Swift, means human-resembling filthy creatures, which the founders of Yahoo Jerry Yang and David Filo deemed themselves to be. And that’s how the venture got its name. Their branding in the early years really delivered on the name with some unique and pretty funny ads and the tagline “Do You Yahoo?“, which helped bring the name to new heights.

6. Volkswagen
A dream car for many now, Volkswagen means people’s car. The story begins with Adolf Hitler who was the first to initiate the idea of making cars for masses, meaning a car which can be afforded by most of the people. This Volkswagen program, sponsored by the state and eventually carried out by the car manufacturer Porsche, was about making an inexpensive car with the capacity to carry two adults and three kids at 62 mph of speed.

7. Asus
Asus, the successful consumer electronic business, got its name from Pegasus which is the winged horse according to the Greek mythology. The initial 3 letters were not used in order to get a better position in the alphabetical listings of company directories.

8. Canon
The company known as Precision Optical Instruments Laboratory was found in the year 1933. What made the company change its name from such a difficult version to something much simpler is the creation of its first camera in 1935 known as Kwanon which signifies Buddhist bodhisattva of mercy in Japanese. That is how the name Canon came to life, which is spelled differently but pronounced the same, and much easier to remember.

9. Coca-Cola
The cola drink that’s in half the world’s hands gets its name from coca leaves and kola nuts which are the ingredients used to flavor the super famous Coca Cola. The creator of Coca Cola John S. Pemberton replaced the K with C for a name that’s easy to remember and repeat.

10. Lego
Lego got its name from the phrase “leg godt” which means “play well.” Although claimed to be a coincidence by the company, the word Lego has a Latin meaning – “I put together” in Latin. Latin company names are known to stand the test of time, and are great for international brands.

11. Ikea
The worldwide known furniture company utilized a random compilation of letters as its name. Ikea comes from the first letters of the founder’s name and that of the village he was brought up in – Ingvar Kamprad Elmtaryd Agunnaryd. Merging these words brought a pronounceable and easy to remember brand to life.

12. Reebok
The African antelope rhebok was the inspiration for the name of the company Reebok. Using a spelling most people would think of when pronouncing the name gave them a more brandable name than rhebok.

13. Verizon
The company Verizon got its name by combining the words veritas (meaning truth in Latin) and horizon, though some may first think of vertical and horizontal as the mash-up of this great name which relates to spanning wide.

Image by: DaveBleasdale