Brands are everywhere, and some are so prominent that we choose them because of their brand image rather than the quality of the product. Brands like Colgate and Pepsi have actually become synonyms of the products themselves. But have you ever wondered how these brands were named? Was it strategy or coincidence? Were they named after a person or after something significant?

To know that, scroll down and see how these 30 famous brands were christened:

1. Nike: Name for the Greek Goddess of Victory.

The swoosh signifies her flight.


2. Coca-Cola: The two main ingredients were Coca leaves and Cola berries.


3. Pepsi: From the digestive enzyme ‘pepsin’.

Although pepsin is not an ingredient in the drink.


Also Read: Famous Brands & Their First Products

4. Google: Derived from ‘googol’ which means 1 followed by 100 zeros.

Signifies owners Larry Page and Sergey Brin’s mission to provide innumerable info to all users.


5. Adidas: Named after owner Adolf Dassler whose nickname was Adi. Adi Dassler became Adidas.


6. Intel: Short for integrated electronics


7. Canon: Adapted from Kwanon (Japanese name of Buddhist Bodhisattva of Mercy).

It was changed to Canon for easier acceptance worldwide.

8. Lego: Derived from Danish words ‘Leg Godt’, which means to ‘play well’.

Lego also means ‘put together’ in Latin, which they claim is actually a coincidence.


9. Nintendo: Transliterated from Nintendou. Nin in Japanese means ‘entrusted’ and Ten-dou means ‘heaven’.


10. Amazon: CEO Jeff Bezos wanted a name starting with ‘A’. He chose Amazon because it is the biggest river in the world, just what he wanted his company to be.


11. Skype: Originally the idea was ‘Sky peer to peer’, which later became Skyper and finally Skype.


12. Adobe: Named after a creek that ran behind the co-founder, John Warnock’s house, called Adobe Creek.


13. Nokia: Started as wood-pulp mill, it expanded its business to producing rubber products in a city in Finland called Nokia.


14. Sony: Derived from the Latin word, ‘Sonus’ (meaning sound) and an American slang word, ‘Sonny’ (meaning bright youngster).


15. Vodafone: Voice, Data and Telefone.


16. Volkswagen: Means ‘People’s car’ in German.

There was a time when only very expensive cars used to ply on German roads. Volkswagen was a revolution.


17. ebay: Originally called Echo Bay. The domain was already taken. So it was shortened to ebay.

18. IBM: Founder TJ Watson Sr wanted to be a step ahead of his former employers ‘National Cash Register’, so he decided to call his company ‘International Business Machines’.

19. Nikon: Short for Nippon Kogaku, which means ‘Japanese Optical’.


20. Reebok: Derived from the Afrikaans spelling of an African Antelope, ‘Rhebok’.


21. Starbucks: Named after a character in Moby Dick, Starbuck.

Originally the name ‘Peqoud’ was suggested, the name of the ship from the novel. When it got rejected, they settled for ‘Starbuck’, the chief mate of that very ship.

22. Virgin: Because the business was new and the team members were virgins at business.

This was suggested by a girl in Richard Branson’s team.


23. Durex: Durable, Reliable and Excellence.


24. Fanta: The head of the German Coca-Cola team asked them to use their ‘Fantasie’ (imagination) to come up with the name. That did not take long though.


25. Nivea: Derived from the Latin word ‘Niveus’, which means snow white.


26. HP (Hewlett Packard): William Hewlett and David Packard flipped a coin to decide whose name would come first.


27. Toyota: Named after founder Kiichiro Toyoda.

The name was changed to Toyota because Toyoda literally means, ‘fertile rice paddies’.


28. Microsoft: A combination of the words Microcomputer and Software.

29. Cisco: Not actually an acronym. They just removed San Fran from San Francisco.


30. Budweiser: Beer has been brewed in Budweis, Bohemia, since 1245. Budweiser means ‘of Budweis’ and was developed as a ‘Bohemian-style’ beer.

Founder Adolphus Busch was inspired to create the beverage after a trip to the region.


Every brand has a story. And the name has of course been significant in these brands’ success. Their name is now their fame!

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