When a Square becomes a Block. Payments giant Square will change its corporate name to Block next week, amid blockchain focus
Jack Dorsey’s Square digital payment specialist has announced a major corporate change, as it focuses increasingly on new technologies.
Square announced on Wednesday it is changing its corporate entity name to Block next week on 10 December.
The move comes just days after Square’s CEO and co-founder Jack Dorsey announced he was stepped down from the CEO role of Twitter, after leading the firm since 2015.
Until that announcement this week, Dorsey had been CEO of both Twitter and Square, and he reportedly spent his mornings at Twitter and his afternoons at Square (Twitter and Square’s San Francisco offices are located across the street from each other).
Dorsey co-founded Square in 2009 as a credit card reader system for retailers (or sellers), which lets people accept credit card payments on a smartphone.
In 2015 the firm went public, and in 2020 Square posted revenues of $9.4bn.
The name ‘Square’ derives from the company’s square-shaped card readers.
But now Square is to become Block.
“The Square name has become synonymous with the company’s Seller business, which provides an integrated ecosystem of commerce solutions, business software, and banking services for sellers, and this move allows the Seller business to own the Square brand it was built for,” said the firm.
It said the name change to Block “creates room for further growth. Block is an overarching ecosystem of many businesses united by their purpose of economic empowerment, and serves many people – individuals, artists, fans, developers, and sellers.”
“We built the Square brand for our Seller business, which is where it belongs,” said Jack Dorsey, cofounder and CEO of Block. “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 build tools to help increase access to the economy.”
The name change to Block distinguishes the corporate entity from its businesses, or building blocks.
There will apparently be no organisational changes, and Square, Cash App, TIDAL (music streaming service), and TBD (crypto-focused business) will continue to maintain their respective brands.
As a result of the name change, Square Crypto, a separate initiative of the company dedicated to advancing Bitcoin, will change its name to Spiral.
However the company’s NYSE ticker symbol “SQ” will not change at this time.
Essentially the name change is happening as the firm’s focus on new technologies ramps up.
In October Square’s Jack Dorsey said the company was considering building a Bitcoin mining hardware system using custom-designed silicon.
The system would make Bitcoin mining more accessible to both businesses and individuals, as well as to increase the power-efficiency of the operation.
It should be remembered that blockchain and Bitcoin has been a focus for Jack Dorsey and Square for a while now.
A year prior in October 2020, Square put approximately 1 percent of its total assets ($50 million) in Bitcoin (4,709 bitcoins).
Square then purchased an additional $170 million worth of Bitcoin (approximately 3,318 bitcoins) in February 2021, bringing it’s total holdings to almost $500 million in Bitcoin (total approximately 8,027 bitcoins).