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Archive for Sunday, January 26, 2003

Briefcase

January 26, 2003

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Company name changes fall in 2002, survey says

A company by any other name might be a useless expense, many companies concluded last year, when corporate name changes plunged by 35 percent.

Worldwide, 2,346 firms changed names last year, down from 3,602 in 2001, according to an annual survey by Enterprise IG Inc., a New York-based brand and identity consultancy.

The moribund global economy gets part of the blame. The usual catalysts for new names, mergers and acquisitions, public stock offers, and new marketing campaigns, were all depressed last year.

In the United States, California led the list with 145 new corporate identities followed by New York at 137.

Technology: Gillette researching 'smart tag' device

The Gillette Co. is exploring technology that could one day push bar codes off products.

The Boston-based company is conducting the first large-scale tests of a "smart tag" device that would allow for easier tracking of goods from plant to warehouse to store shelves.

The technology, developed out of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Auto-ID Center, is designed to provide large companies with highly specialized, up-to-the-minute information about how their products move through the supply chain.

If the tests work, Gillette says it could put a half a billion of the chips on its products within a few years.

Motley Fool: Name that company

Based in Charlotte, N.C., I'm the third-largest bank in the United States, with 4,400 domestic branches, 134,000 employees, and customers in 150 nations. I serve more than one in four households in America, more than 150 customers per second. More than 1 million people pay their bills online through my Web site. I'm the No. 1 small-business lender. I lent Walt Disney the money to build Disneyland. I'm also the No. 1 debit-card issuer in the United States, with nearly 17 million cards outstanding. More than 3.2 million American families have mortgages through me. Who am I?

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