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Saints Row maker Koch Media gets new name it hopes you can pronounce

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Koch Media, the Saints Row publisher whose name few could correctly, or consistently, pronounce, is rebranding. The German-Austrian company is now Plaion.

For the record, “Plaion” is pronounced “play-on,” which makes sense given its primary product (it has a small film business). “Koch” had been called/mentally read/pronounced variously as “Coke,” (like the right-wing political donor siblings); “Kotch” (as in Ed, mayor of New York from 1978-1989); “Cook” (like Jim Koch, co-founder of the Samuel Adams beer brewery); and, less politely, “Cock.” Koch Media, acquired by Embracer Group in 2018, was named for co-founder Franz Koch, which is pronounced “cough,” a Plaion executive told VentureBeat in an interview Thursday morning.

Co-founder Klemens Kundratitz told that the name change isn’t “window-dressing. The signal we’re sending is that we’re on a journey, and it’s good to give this journey a new name, new visual appearance.” Kundratitz told VentureBeat that the decision was made by Plaion leadership internally and was not mandated from above by Embracer.

But, “if they had said they hated the name, we might have reconsidered it,” Kundratitz added. The name change comes with a new logo, which Kundratitz said was meant to evoke the “play” symbol on the buttons of most electronic devices.

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