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What does Asda stand for? B&Q, Tesco, M&S, H&M, IKEA, Aldi, ASOS and B&M names explained

Have you ever wondered how big name brands and supermarkets got their names? While some are more obvious such as M&S, some company names come from unique acronyms you may not have known.

From fashion brands like ASOS to music giants HMV, some businesses like to hide hidden meanings in their company names while others such as B&Q and B&M draw on their founders for inspiration.

Here’s a list of some big brands and how they got their name:

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While it may sound like a quirky supermarket name, the chain acquired its name on May 3, 1965, when co-founder Peter Asquith was looking to build his first new supermarket from scratch.

He was looking for a company to take over his in-store butchery operation, so he made contact with Noel Stockdale at Associated Dairies.

According to the ASDA website, it said: “It was the beginning of a fantastic retail partnership.”

ASquith + DAiries = the birth of ASDA


B&Q was founded in 1969 by two men called Richard Block and David Quayle who opened their first store in Southampton.

In the 1960s professional building supplies were mainly found at builders’ merchants and hardware stores, and home improvement was a hobby of the few, according to B&Q’s website.

Block and Quayle wanted to bring value, longer opening hours and a broader product range to everyone, so in 1969 they opened their first store in Portswood Road, Southampton, Hampshire, in a disused cinema.

Although initially called Block and Quayle, the name was soon shortened to B&Q.


Tesco was founded by Jack Cohen, the son of Jewish migrants from Poland, in 1919.

The name came about after he bought a shipment of tea from