ABN AMRO — in the 1960s, the Nederlandse Handelmaatschappij (Dutch Trading Society; 1824) and the Twentsche Bank merged to form the Algemene Bank Nederland (ABN; General Bank of the Netherlands). In 1966, the Amsterdamsche Bank and the Rotterdamsche Bank merged to form the Amro Bank. In 1991, ABN and Amro Bank merged to form ABN AMRO
Adidas — from the name of the founder Adolf (Adi) Dassler.
Adobe — from the name of the river Adobe Creek that ran behind the houses of founders John Warnock and Chuck Geschke.
Apple — for the
favourite fruit of co-founder Steve Jobs and/or for the time he worked
at an apple orchard. Apple wanted to distance itself from the cold,
unapproachable, complicated imagery created by other computer companies
at the time — which had names such as IBM, DEC, Cincom and Tesseract —
in order to get people to use them at home. They looked for a name that
supported a brand positioning strategy that was to be perceived as
simple, warm, human, approachable and different. Note: Apple had to get
approval from the Beatle’s Apple Corps to use the name ‘Apple’ and paid
a one-time royalty of $100,000 to McIntosh Laboratory, Inc., a maker of
high-end audio equipment, to use the derivative name ‘Macintosh’
BMW — abbreviation of Bayerische Motoren Werke (Bavarian Motor Factories).
Coca-Cola — derived from the coca leaves and kola nuts used as flavoring. Coca-Cola creator John S. Pemberton changed the ‘K’ of kola to ‘C’ to make the name look better.
— formed from a merger of soap manufacturers Colgate & Company and
Palmolive-Peet. Peet was dropped in 1953. Colgate was named after
William Colgate, an English immigrant, who set up a starch, soap and
candle business in New York City in 1806. Palmolive was named for the
two oils (Palm and Olive) used in its manufacture.
eBay — Pierre
Omidyar, who had created the Auction Web trading website, had formed a
web consulting concern called Echo Bay Technology Group. “Echo Bay”
didn’t refer to the town in Nevada, “It just sounded cool,” Omidyar
reportedly said. Echo Bay Mines Limited, a gold mining company, had
already taken EchoBay.com, so Omidyar registered what (at the time) he
thought was the second best name: eBay.com.
Hotmail — Founder
Jack Smith got the idea of accessing e-mail via the web from a computer
anywhere in the world. When Sabeer Bhatia came up with the business
plan for the mail service he tried all kinds of names ending in ‘mail’
and finally settled for Hotmail as it included the letters “HTML” — the
markup language used to write web pages. It was initially referred to
as HoTMaiL with selective upper casing.
LG — from the combination of two popular Korean brands, Lucky and Goldstar. (In Mexico, publicists explained the name change as an abbreviation to Línea Goldstar, Spanish for Goldstar Line)
Microsoft — coined by
Bill Gates to represent the company that was devoted to microcomputer
software. Originally christened Micro-Soft, the ‘-’ was removed later.
The notch cut out of the ‘o’ in the current logo is possibly
reminiscent of that dash
Motorola — Founder
Paul Galvin came up with this name when his company (at the time,
Galvin Manufacturing Company) started manufacturing radios for cars.
Many audio equipment makers of the era used the “ola” ending for their
products, most famously the “Victrola” phonograph made by the Victor
Talking Machine Company. The name was meant to convey the idea of
“sound” and “motion”. It became so widely recognized that the company
later adopted it as the
Nokia — started as a wood-pulp mill, the company expanded into producing rubber products in the Finnish city of Nokia. The company later adopted the city’s name
Oracle — Larry
Ellison, Ed Oates and Bob Miner were working on a consulting project
for the CIA. The code name for the project was Oracle (the CIA saw this
as the system to give answers to all questions or some such). The
project was designed to use the newly written SQL database language
from IBM. The project was eventually terminated but they decided to
finish what they started and bring it to the world. They kept the name
Oracle and created the RDBMS engine. Later they changed the name of the
company, Relational Technology Inc., to the name of the product.
Red Hat — while at
college, company founder Marc Ewing was given the Cornell lacrosse team
cap (with red and white stripes) by his grandfather. People would turn
to him to solve their problems and he was referred to as that guy in
the red hat. He lost the cap, later the manual of the beta version of
Red Hat Linux had an appeal to readers (anyone finding it) to return
his Red Hat.
SAP — “Systems, Applications, Products in Data Processing”, formerly “SystemAnalyse and Programmentwicklung” (German for “System analysis and program development”), formed by four ex-IBM employees who used to work in the ‘Systems/Applications/Projects’ group of IBM.
Sony — from the Latin
word ’sonus’ meaning sound, and ’sonny’ a slang word used by Americans
to refer to a bright youngster, “since we were sonny boys working in
sound and vision”, said Akio Morita. Sony was originally called Tokyo
Tsoshiu Kogyo Kabushika Kaika. Sony was chosen as it could be
pronounced easily in many languages
Vodafone — from Voice, Data, Telefone. Vodafone made the UK’s first mobile call at a few minutes past midnight on 1 January 1985.
Wipro — from Western India Vegetable Products Limited. The company started as a modest vanaspati and laundry soap producer and is now an IT services giant.
Yahoo! — a ackronym for Yet Another Hierarchical Officious Oracle.
The word Yahoo was invented by Jonathan Swift and used in his book
Gulliver’s Travels. It represents a person who is repulsive in
appearance and barely human. Yahoo! founders David Filo and Jerry Yang
jokingly considered themselves yahoos. It’s also an interjection
sometimes associated with United States Southerners’ and Westerners’
expression of joy, as alluded to in Yahoo.com commercials that ends
with someone singing the word “yahoo”.
Source : Wikipedia