FedEx announced it will be getting rid of the Kinko’s part of its name with the added cost of $696 million.

FedEx, the big boys of Memphis, figured out that it just wasn’t a good idea to merge the two brands. They’re going in a new direction now. But isn’t that a lot of money to pay out for a ‘brand name divorce’?

Their new direction will come with the new name FedEx Office and will target large business clients. Basically these guys are getting sick of trying to catch the little fish in the small office space.

When FedEx and Kinko’s began working together back in 2004, there were only 1,200 locations. Since that time they have expanded to 1,900 stores. Not very impressive when you realize FedEx paid $2.4 million to open just 700 stores in over 4 years. For a company that size, those are some small potatoes.

Get ready for the “all-out” marketing campaign that will soon follow to brand the new – FedEx Office (Remember these are guys who branded the hell out of the movie Castaway). According to an article in Bloomberg about the ‘divorce’, that campaign may have already begun:

“The name FedEx Office more accurately represents our broader role of providing superior information and services,” Brian Philips, the unit’s chief executive officer, said in the statement. “We are a back office for small businesses and a branch office for medium to large businesses and mobile professionals.”

It would have been great if Philips then unnecessarily added,

And, needless to say, we’re also a front office for the people who actually work at that particular FedEx Office store. We also enjoy NBC’s hit television comedy, ‘The Office’, which is based on a similarly named British comedy, ‘The Office’. . . FedEx Office is totally gonna rule! Anyway, I’m going to ‘office-cially’ wrap up this press release now, I’ve gotta head back to THE OFFICE!

Bloomberg: FedEx to Rename Kinko’s, Record $696 Million in Costs, June 3, 2008