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The Real Reason CA Inc., er, CA Technologies Changed Names

For the second time in four years, CA Inc. (the former Computer Associates International Inc.) is changing its name. But this time the name change has nothing to do with a tarnished brand. Instead, the move -- to the name CA Technologies -- has everything to do with Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Here are the details.

The VAR Guy

May 17, 2010

2 Min Read
The Real Reason CA Inc., er, CA Technologies Changed Names

catechnologies

For the second time in four years, CA Inc. (the former Computer Associates International Inc.) is changing its name. But this time the name change has nothing to do with a tarnished brand. Instead, the move — to the name CA Technologies — has everything to do with Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Here are the details.

Rewind four years. Back in 2006, Computer Associates was rebuilding its brand and reputation with partners, customers and Wall Street following an accounting scandal that nearly crushed the company under former CEO Sanjay Kumar.

As part of that corporate recovery process, Computer Associates renamed itself CA Inc.

At first glance, re-branding was a smart idea, given all of Computer Associates’ baggage. But the new name choice back in 2006 was horrendous. The reason: It’s incredibly challenging to search engine optimize around the term CA Inc. — especially when you’re a software company that can accidentally get lumped in with search results for millions of individuals and businesses that have the State of California (Abbreviation: CA) in their street addresses.

So now, at last, CA Inc. becomes CA Technologies.

The software company is putting all sorts of positive spin on the new name, which was announced at CAWorld. In a prepared statement, CEO Bill McCracken said: “We are executing on a bold strategy to delight our customers with unprecedented levels of IT speed and flexibility.”

CA goes on to say:

“The brand and name change to CA Technologies was designed with insights from nearly 700 customers, partners and market thought leaders, and was developed to ensure the delivery of a consistent story in the market that reflects the full breadth and depth of what the company offers.”

That’s quite a lofty statement. And let’s give CA the benefit of the doubt. Perhaps the company really, really did perform a lot of research to assist the name change.

But The VAR Guy has spoken to plenty of CA sources over the past two to three years. Say what you want about visions and goals. But this name change, The VAR Guy believes, was forced for one reason alone: Search Engine Optimization.

Of course, CA Technologies still seems to be in learning mode. To wit, The VAR Guy can’t quite understand why CA Technologies’ Twitter ID remains, um, CAinc.

Ooops.

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