Amazon.com - Founder Jeff Bezos renamed the company to Amazon (from the earlier name of Cadabra.com) after the world's most voluminous river, the Amazon. He saw the potential for a larger volume of sales in an online bookstore as opposed to the then prevalent bookstores. (Alternative: It is said that Jeff Bezos named his book store Amazon simply to cash in on the popularity of Yahoo at the time. Yahoo listed entries alphabetically, and thus Amazon would always appear above its competitors in the relevant categories it was listed in.)
Fanta- was originally invented by Max Keith in Germanyin 1940 when World War II made it difficult to get the Coca-Cola syrup to Nazi Germany. Fanta was originally made from byproducts of cheese and jam production. The name comes from the German word for imagination (Fantasie or Phantasie), because the inventors thought that imagination was needed to taste oranges from the strange mix.
[This explains why Fanta was never one of my favorites. All that imagination spoils the taste.]
Google- the name is an intentional misspelling of the word googol, reflecting the company's mission to organize the immense amount of information available online.
[Googol is so k3w1.]
Kodak- Both the Kodak camera and the name were the invention of founder George Eastman . The letter "K" was a favorite with Eastman; he felt it a strong and incisive letter. He tried out various combinations of words starting and ending with "K". He saw three advantages in the name. It had the merits of a trademark word, would not be mis-pronounced and the name did not resemble anything in the art. There is a misconception that the name was chosen because of its similarity to the sound produced by the shutter of the camera.
[What's with all these people with fascination with letter "K"? ok, At least he didn't make it Kkodakkkk, or something like that. On the second thought, I am thinking about renaming my blog to "kmall kiger" :-P ]
Mitsubishi- The name Mitsubishi (??) has two parts: mitsu means three and hishi (changing to bishi in the middle of the word) means water chestnut, and from here rhombus, which is reflected in the company's logo.
[I am still to understand how chestnut turned into rhombus. It could have been easier if it were three diamonds or something.]
Pepsi- Pepsi derives its name from (treatment of) dyspepsia, an intestinal ailment.
[LOL, how accurate!]
Red Hat- Company founder Marc Ewing was given the Cornell lacrosse team cap (with red and white stripes) while at college by his grandfather. People would turn to him to solve their problems, and he was referred to as 'that guy in the red hat'. He lost the cap and had to search for it desperately. The manual of the beta version of Red Hat Linux had an appeal to readers to return his Red Hat if found by anyone.
[I was imagining that they wanted to name it something like "Red Hot" but thought it's too vulgar and settled for "Red Hat" instead.]
Yahoo!- a "backronym" for Yet Another Hierarchical Officious Oracle. The word Yahoo was invented by Jonathan Swift and used in his book Gulliver's Travels. It represents a person who is repulsive in appearance action and is barely human. Yahoo! founders David Filo and Jerry Yang selected the name because they jokingly considered themselves yahoos!
[And for a long time I was thinking it has got something to do with Shammi Kapoor.]