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Thu, 28 Nov 2013 15:15:00 GMT | By Alison Griswold
How 15 famous companies got their quirky names

We look at how Yahoo, Google, IKEA, and many other major companies got their unique names.



Google; BlackBerry; Starbucks Coffee (© Bloomberg via Getty Images/Getty; Mark Blinch/Newscom/RTR; Caetano Barreira/Newscom/RTR)
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  • Google; BlackBerry; Starbucks Coffee (© Bloomberg via Getty Images/Getty; Mark Blinch/Newscom/RTR; Caetano Barreira/Newscom/RTR)
  • Packaged customer orders await delivery. (© Bloomberg via Getty Images/Getty)
  • Cans of PepsiCo. Inc. Pepsi and Diet Pepsi. (© Bloomberg via Getty Images/Getty)
  • Reebok CrossFit footwear (© Bloomberg via Getty Images/Getty)
  • A gold colored Google Inc. logo. (© Bloomberg via Getty Images/Getty)
  • This September 12, 2013 photo illustration shows the newly designed Yahoo logo seen on a smartphone. (© AFP/Getty Images)
  • CAT machines are seen on a lot. (© Jessica Rinaldi/Files/Newscom/RTR)
  • Ikea (© Petr Josek/Newscom/RTR)
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Bloomberg via Getty Images/Getty; Mark Blinch/Newscom/RTR; Caetano Barreira/Newscom/RTRShow Thumbnails
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Ever wonder where Starbucks got its name? How about Google or Yahoo?

It’s not something we think about often, but the names of many major companies that now seem familiar are often made up, seemingly unrelated, and quite quirky. After all, why would you call a cellphone company BlackBerry? What does Ikea have to do with home goods and furniture?

We tracked down the etymologies of 15 of the world’s biggest and most oddly named companies. You’ll find that each of their names has a fascinating origin story.

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