Blackwater, the controversial security contractor that changed its name to Xe (pronounced “zee”) in February 2009, announced [Monday] that it’s changing its name yet again: to Academi. Or, as the company’s press release prefers to call it, ACADEMI.
Three names in less than three years? There’s got to be something else going on here besides being bored with the letterhead, and of course there is:
One of those “extraordinary changes,” unmentioned in the release, was the departure in 2010 of Blackwater founder Erik Prince. Prince moved on to Abu Dhabi, where he created a mercenary army for the crown prince. Other changes at Blackwater/Xe/Academi include the composition of the board, whose members now include Bush Administration Attorney General John Ashcroft. Ashcroft is serving as the company’s “ethics adviser.”
And besides, “Qwikster” was already taken.
Note: Having refined my own thinking on this subject, I think a more descriptive name might be, oh, “Global MFs,” which conceivably might be available by the time Blaxemi, or whoever the hell they are, are ready for the next name change in January 2013.