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From ASOS to IKEA and B&Q here is what the initials of the biggest shopping brands really stand for

From ASOS to IKEA and B&Q here is what the initials of the biggest shopping brands really stand for 

From huge clothing outlets and toy companies to DIY and homeware stores, it's not unusual for shopping brands in the UK to use acronyms or initialisms.
This might be down to lazy consumers or businesses trying to look cool, but what do those random letters really mean?
Brands such as H&M are initalisms - this is when you simply say the individual letters.
Meanwhile shops including IKEA are acronyms, this is because you can say the first letters together as a word.
Confused or intrigued? With the help from our sister title Wales Online , we are here to explain.

ASOS - As Seen on Screen

Does it ever cross your mind what the name actually stands for while you scroll through the endless list of clothes while on your lunch break?
The global fashion brand and online clothing outlet kicked off in 1999 as a supplier of unbranded clothes to celebrities on TV and the idea was people could find clothes and accessories they had seen celebs wearing.
It didn't take long for people to start referring to AsSeenOnScreen as ASOS and in late 2000 the domain name www.asos.com was bought.


B&M - Billington and Mayman
Bargains and More perhaps makes the most sense but the initialism actually stands for Billington & Mayman.
Malcolm Billington set up the store in 1978 and shortened to B&M for Bargain Madness.
Billington remained the company director until 1996.
B&Q - Block & Quayle

Block & Quayle might sound a like a deep house duo who will do a 6-hour set in room at The Warehouse Project but it's actually just named after its founding pair.
Richard Block and David Quayle created B&Q after they purchased and fitted out a former furniture warehouse in a Southampton suburb.
The duo soon shortened the brand to B&Q as stock delivery notes and invoices were already unofficially abbreviating the name.
Do you know what B&Q stands for?
Do you know what B&Q stands for?
C&A - Clemens and August
C&A arguably has a reputation for being Cheap and Awful and although its last UK store closed in 2001, it still has a presence in other European countries.
The company was founded by brothers Clemens and August Brenninkmeijer in 1841 as a Dutch textile company before moving into clothes in the 1900s.
HSBC - The Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation
Houses, Shoes, Boats and Cars are just some of the things you can buy if you take out a giant loan at HSBC but sadly that’s not what it stands for.
HSBC was actually founded by a Scotsman called Sir Thomas Sutherland in Hong Kong in 1865, back when it was still a British colony.
HSBC benefited from the start of trading into China and it wasn’t until the millennium that HSBC expanded into continental Europe after the acquisition of Credit Comercial de France.

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