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  • Writer's pictureArmin Wieland

What's in a Name? The V5 Digital Story

Updated: Jun 21, 2022

"What's in a name?" Isn't that a great question? It's the sort of question that would normally have most businesses telling tales about how they spent 3 days and nights brainstorming together in a dark, smoky room for the best possible name to represent their ideals, mission and vision.

Now, I wish I had something nearly as interesting as that. But this isn't that kind of story. In fact, the story behind our name is a lot less thought-out, and a lot more "really? THAT'S how I got the name?".

So, let's dive in.

The search for our name started back in 2018. (I say search because back then, I really was searching.) It's a digital business so I needed a name for the digital space. Thankfully, I had an idea of what I wanted the name to reflect: simple, immediately recognizable, different and pronounceable. The only problem was I had no idea where to begin. It was a feeling of "I'll know it when I find it", except there was no map, no direction and no plan.

Full speed ahead.

But just getting started is 80% of the battle. So, the initial ideas were written down and bounced around; thrown away and re-written; critiqued and thrown away again. Shortly after beginning my search for that exclusive name, I called for the help of brand specialist Gary to see if we could find a breakthrough. With his help I learned a lot of the key aspects for what goes into the creation of a name. And after receiving his inputs, I managed to refine my search—landing on the name "Algorythm Digital".

On the first glance this really wasn't a bad name. It definitely did fit into the digital space. But it was missing something. Algorythm Digital was a little too broad. And if you look back to what I mentioned the name should reflect. Algorythm Digital only ticked two of the four boxes. It was different and recognizable. But it wasn't simple. And it wasn't easily pronounceable (you can imagine that picking up the phone and saying "Algorythm Digital" 30+ times a day would also get a little tiresome).

In case you are wondering what happened to the "Algorythm" name:

Algorythm Labs is the innovation and ideation hub at V5 Digital. Here we create amazing solutions - most often first to market - together with our collaborators and clients. We utilise The Lean Startup Way to rapidly test and learn so that we can consistently create customer solutions that solve real business problems.

The search continued.

I started reaching out to my family and friends for ideas about what a good name could sound like. The ideas flew back and forth over the phone. But ultimately that didn't lead to much success either. Don’t get me wrong, there were plenty of ideas. But they just weren't what I was looking for. I needed something that would stand out in a field of generic digital-related terms and names. Something that resonated deeply with me and the business.

I've always been very interested in, and passionate about aircrafts. My great uncle, Gustav Wieland, was an aeronautical engineer who headed the design of the Dornier Do 31 VTOL aircraft in the 1960's.

Dornier Do 31 E1 at the Dornier Museum Friedrichshafen in Germany 🇩🇪
Dornier Do 31 E1 at the Dornier Museum Friedrichshafen in Germany 🇩🇪

My older brother is a pilot, and I still remember seeing my uncle landing his Cessna 210 on the farm when I was 4 years old. Aircrafts have always been a part of my life. And while my personal aircraft journey only went from flying paper planes to flying drones; my passion for aircrafts is stronger than ever. And I still feel like a kid in a candy store whenever I take a flight somewhere.

One morning, while I was taking a shower, it hit me; "V5 Digital". And there it was. The name I was looking for after all this time had finally found me. Inside I knew this was the name I've been looking for, but I still wanted some feedback. And what better place to get honest feedback than your family WhatsApp group? Thankfully, they shared my feelings about the name. I even managed to get a rare response from my brother giving me his approval. Remember that feeling I described earlier of "I'll know it when I find it"?

My late Grand Uncle, Dr Ing. Gustav Wieland (second from the left) with the Dornier Do 31
My late Grand Uncle, Dr Ing. Gustav Wieland (second from the left) with the Dornier Do 31

This was it.

The funny part is that once I had this name, everything else started coming together. The meaning, the purpose and values of the business all lined up with the name.

You see, the letter V comes from the NATO phonetic alphabet, and is deeply tied to aircrafts and air travel. But V also stands for victory, for conquering new heights, exceeding the impossible and continually evolving and improving.

V is also the Roman numeral for 5 which signifies curiosity, change, freedom and balance; all core elements I wanted the business to be centred around. Once I had the name, the rest fell into place. Now this might not have been the most glamorous "what's in a name" story you've ever read. But it's ours, and it's what's made us into the business we are today.

The V5 Digital styled Airbus A350-900 with registration V5-DIG
The V5 Digital styled Airbus A350-900 with registration V5-DIG

V5 Digital might not have been the name of choice for some of you, but it's helped define us as a leading brand in the digital space that is always taking our customers to greater heights. And who knows; maybe you're just one shower away from your next breakthrough.

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