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What’s in a Name?

Monday, September 22nd, 2008
A while ago, I decided I wanted to work for myself and that I should set up a fundraising agency all of my own. I was going to call it Small Axe after the Bob Marley song – for reasons that will be self evident when you’ve heard it (or perhaps read the lyric if you find the vocal a bit impenetrable).
Then, having read a book that said you should try to make what you sell evident in your name, I decided to call my company Love and Money. If you go to Companies House, you’ll see that I actually got to the point of registering that one. It’s still dormant and likely to remain so because I unexpectedly acquired a business partner who absolutely hated it.
I’ll spare you our longlist of awful names. For a couple of hours at The Queen’s in Crouch End we quite fancied Many but that was taken in all its URL permutations and when we sobered up we weren’t sure anyway. Tim favoured Cry London but as the parent of baby twins I just couldn’t get past the image of screaming snot in stereo. So we were both relieved when I thought of Open and Tim grudgingly accepted that it was a stroke of creative genius.
Why Open? Well, we both cut our teeth on Direct Mail and getting things open is pretty fundamental in that business. And in our Web 2.o future, everything’s open – sources, communities, this blog, you name it.
But Open is also about how we want to do business. Not just in the sense of being transparent but in drawing the best people and ideas from wherever we find them. We know that we can’t have everyone inside our company and under our control. But we can forge partnerships with the best and that’s exactly what we’re going to do.
But I still think Love and Money is a bloody good name.
James

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