Square renames itself Block as it focuses on technologies like blockchain and is expanding beyond its original credit card reader business.
Jack Dorsey's payment giant said in an announcement that effective December 10, the new name "recognizes the company's growth" and "creates room for further growth". Block continues to trade under the ticker SQ on the New York Stock Exchange.
"We built the Square brand for our seller business where it belongs," said Dorsey, co-founder and CEO, in a statement. “Block is a new name, but our purpose of economic empowerment remains the same. No matter how we grow or change, we will continue to develop tools to improve access to the economy. "
Jack Dorsey (L), CEO of Square and CEO of Twitter, broadcasts live video while standing in front of the New York Stock Exchange for the Square IPO in New York on November 19, 2015.
Lucas Jackson | Reuters
Dorsey co-founded Square in 2009, which focuses on personal payments and the card reader of the same name that enables people to accept credit card payments on a smartphone. San Francisco-based Square has since added a peer-to-peer digital banking app and small business loans, received a banking charter, and started offering crypto and stock trading. The company has acquired the buy-now-pay-later provider Afterpay and the music streaming service Tidal from Jay-Z. It also doubles on Bitcoin with a crypto-focused business called TBD.
As part of the rebranding of Square, Square Crypto, a separate part of the company dedicated to advancing Bitcoin, will change its name to Spiral.
The name Block "has many related meanings for the company – building blocks, neighborhood blocks and their local businesses, communities gathering at block parties filled with music, a blockchain, a chunk of code and obstacles to overcome," Block said in a statement .
Dorsey stepped down from his other job as Twitter CEO on Monday after running both Twitter and Square since 2015. He believes Twitter "is ready to move forward from its founders" and will now have more time to devote to Square's growing portfolio. But Dorsey should also focus on his fascination with cryptocurrency.
The news comes about a month after Facebook changed its name to Meta to reflect CEO Mark Zuckerberg's plan to build a virtual world called Metaverse. Google similarly renamed itself Alphabet six years ago to reflect other lines of business.
Square was one of the biggest winners of 2020 when consumers switched to digital payments. Stocks are down about 2% so far this year as investors turn away from higher-growth technology stocks.
Correction: Square (now Block) trades on the NYSE.