A Whopping List of Startup Brand Name Changes

Found this great blog post over on Matt Turck’s website, that started off with a Tweet of some of the better startup brand name changes in recent history.

As that Tweet gained traction, and other brand name changes, Matt compiled a super interesting list/table of all these name changes, which you can see at the end of this post.

The reason why this all caught my eye?

I really had no idea that Google was first called BackRub!

As Matt explains in his post:

This post is mostly frivolity, and *not scientific research*. In particular, there are nuances to a lot of those stories (e.g., Backrub was the name of the original Google algorithm, as opposed to the actual company name – still one of my favorite examples!).

And here’s a bit more information, from a super insightful post on BusinessInsider, on how Google’s name actually came about:

The name “Google” actually came from a graduate student at Stanford named Sean Anderson, Koller writes. Anderson suggested the word “googolplex” during a brainstorming session, and Page countered with the shorter “googol.” Googol is the digit 1 followed by 100 zeroes, while googolplex is 1 followed by a googol zeros.   

Anderson checked to see if that domain name was taken, but accidentally searched for “google.com” instead of “googol.com.” Page liked that name even better, and registered the domain name for Brin and himself on September 15, 1997.

The true story behind Google’s hilarious first name: BackRub

Startup Brand Name Changes

Original NameNew NameCategory
BackRubGoogleConsumer/B2C
The FacebookFacebookConsumer/B2C
twttrTwitterConsumer/B2C
Jerry and David’s Guide to the World Wide WebYahoo!Consumer/B2C
Cadabra / Relentless.comAmazonConsumer/B2C
Quantum Computer ServicesAOLConsumer/B2C
ConfinityPayPalConsumer/B2C
Palo Alto DeliveryDoorDashConsumer/B2C
‘snewRedditConsumer/B2C
AirBed & BreakfastAirbnbConsumer/B2C
TotePinterestConsumer/B2C
justin.tvTwitchConsumer/B2C
ClasstivityClassPassConsumer/B2C
PicabooSnapConsumer/B2C
MaplebearInstacartConsumer/B2C
ThinkStacheDegreedConsumer/B2C
YocalYelpConsumer/B2C
KibbleNetflixConsumer/B2C
zimridesLyftConsumer/B2C
UbercabUberConsumer/B2C
ShoesiteZapposConsumer/B2C
NewTVQuibiConsumer/B2C
DoorbotRingConsumer/B2C
MoxieBumbleConsumer/B2C
kaChingWealthfrontConsumer/B2C
BodegaStockwellConsumer/B2C
Auction WebEbayConsumer/B2C
BurbnInstagramConsumer/B2C
Savage Beast TechnologiesPandoraConsumer/B2C
StickybitsTurntableFMConsumer/B2C
MrchewyChewyConsumer/B2C
Blue Ribbon SportsNikeConsumer/B2C
Dimension SixNikeConsumer/B2C
United FruitChiquitaConsumer/B2C
PC’s LimitedDellConsumer/B2C
Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing3MConsumer/B2C
Research In MotionBlackberryConsumer/B2C
DrivUrSelfHertzConsumer/B2C
Goodfellow’s Dry Goods CompanyTargetConsumer/B2C
Amazin’ SoftwareEA SportsConsumer/B2C
BankAmericardVisaConsumer/B2C
Master Charge: The Interbank CardMastercardEnterprise/B2B
National Biscuit CompanyNabiscoConsumer/B2C
Software Development LaboratoriesOracleEnterprise/B2B
SaasBeeZoomEnterprise/B2B
/dev/paymentsStripeEnterprise/B2B
SaaSureOktaEnterprise/B2B
SquirrelSquareEnterprise/B2B
10GenMongoDBEnterprise/B2B
North Tahoe Power ToolsWorkdayEnterprise/B2B
eSharesCartaEnterprise/B2B
PlanktonFirebaseEnterprise/B2B
DaPulseMondayEnterprise/B2B
ZenPayrollGustoEnterprise/B2B
SWsoftParallelsEnterprise/B2B
SMTP APISendgridEnterprise/B2B
Elance+odeskUpworkEnterprise/B2B
Jomax TechnologiesGoDaddyEnterprise/B2B
Tiny SpeckSlackEnterprise/B2B
DistroBotKiva SystemsEnterprise/B2B
Jbara SoftwareGainsightHQEnterprise/B2B
dotCloudDockerEnterprise/B2B
37signalsBasecampEnterprise/B2B
Computing Tabulating Recording CompanyIBMEnterprise/B2B
zStackParseEnterprise/B2B
Cymitar Technology GroupRackspaceEnterprise/B2B
ShowWebGLSketchfabEnterprise/B2B
TriggerMailBluecoreEnterprise/B2B
Developer AuctionHiredEnterprise/B2B
ChubbyBrainCB InsightsEnterprise/B2B
CarbonAIKedroEnterprise/B2B
ZenProspectApolloEnterprise/B2B