Friday’s rolled round again, and so it’s time for another Friday Feature.
It’s companies whose names begin with the letter L that are on the cards today.
1. The history of the Lego Group began all the way back in 1932, when Ole Kirk Christiansen began making wooden toys in his workshop. It was in 1934 that the Lego name was officially assumed, this coming from the Danish for “play well” leg godt. The company began making plastic toys in 1947, but it wasn’t until 1949 that they began producing the interlocking bricks, then known as “Automatic Binding Bricks”, that they are now most famous for. The modern version of the Lego brick was patented on the 28th of January 1958 at 1:58pm, with all bricks made that year still compatible with those produced today.
2. Lionhead Studios was founded by Peter Molyneux in 1997, its first major release being 2001’s god simulation game Black & White. The company’s logo featured quite prominently in this game, with the logo on the game’s initial loading screen able to be manipulated by the player as well as it appearing as an icon and even tattoo within the game itself. These opportunities for logo manipulation also appear in other Lionhead games, such as Black & White 2, while Fable II’s initial loading screen features a number of alternative logos.
3. Lenovo is a portmanteau, comprised of Le- – this taken from the company’s original name ‘Legend’ – and novo, the pseudo-Latin word for ‘new’. The Chinese company took over IBM’s PC division in 2004, and is perhaps best known for its range of laptops and tablets (particularly the ThinkPad; its design is based on a traditional Japanese lunchbox, it also being the only laptop certified for use on the International Space Station).
4. Despite most of its logo incarnations featuring a black Labrador Retriever, the name Lycos actually comes from Lycosidae, which is the family that wolf spiders come from (and thus presumably is a reference to search engine ‘spiders’). Founded in Pittsburgh in 1994 and still around despite often being overlooked in favour of its more famous peers, the company’s iconic dog was arguably a rather well chosen symbol, going hand in hand (or is that paw?) with the company’s slogan “Go get it!”
5. The name L’Oréal comes from Auréale, the first hair dye formula created by French chemist Eugène Schueller in 1907. On the 30th of July 1909, Schueller founded the Société Française de Teintures Inoffensives pour Cheveux (which translates as the “Safe Hair Dye Company of France” or, more literally, the “French Society of Inoffensive Tinctures for Hair”), which would eventually become the company L’Oréal as we know it today. The company’s slogan has changed over the years from “Because I’m worth it” to “Because you’re worth it” and finally “Because we’re worth it”, thus hoping to promote stronger consumer involvement.