By Emily Bary
Square Inc. is joining the corporate-name-change party, announcing Wednesday that it plans to become known as Block as it looks for a moniker that better reflects its diversified set of businesses.
While the financial-technology company got its start offering payment-processing services to small businesses under the Square /zigman2/quotes/205989440/composite SQ -2.78% umbrella, it has since branched into new areas. The company operates the Cash App mobile wallet and the music-streaming platform Tidal . Square also runs “TBD54566975,” a crypto-related effort. Square further announced Wednesday that it would be housing its bitcoin-advancement work in an initiative called Spiral.
“The [Block] name has many associated meanings for the company — building blocks, neighborhood blocks and their local businesses, communities coming together at block parties full of music, a blockchain, a section of code, and obstacles to overcome,” Square said in a press release.
A change to the corporate name “allows the Seller business to own the Square brand it was built for,” the company continued.
Shares of the company will continue to trade under the ticker symbol “SQ.” Square expects that the name change to Block Inc. will become official around Dec. 10.
Square becomes the latest technology company to opt for a corporate name change amid sprawling ambitions beyond its core brand. Facebook recently became Meta Platforms Inc. /zigman2/quotes/205064656/composite FB -3.97% , while Google transformed into Alphabet Inc. /zigman2/quotes/205453964/composite GOOG -2.71% /zigman2/quotes/202490156/composite GOOGL -2.74% back in 2015. Looking beyond the tech sector, it’s worth noting that name changes evoking the blockchain concept were all the rage back in 2017.
Shares of Square were up 0.8% in after-hours trading Wednesday. They declined 6.6% in Wednesday’s regular session.