Federal + Express
FedEx is more a “syllabic abbreviation” than a portmanteau. It’s an abbreviated form of Federal Express, the company’s original name. They’re based in Memphis, Tennessee and are a courier and package delivery service, started in 1973 to compete with United Parcel Service (UPS). They’re known for their overnight package delivery service (one of their early advertising slogans was “When it Absolutely, Positively has to be there overnight”) and also for their package tracking system which provides realtime updates on where packages are located and who signed for delivery.
This is maybe their most memorable commercial, featuring John Moschitta, Jr.
FedEx bought Kinko’s, a printing and office services company, in 2004, renaming them “FedEx Kinko’s.” I spent many hours at Kinko’s getting training manuals created in my former life.
FedEx probably started calling themselves that because so many people were using “fedex” as a verb, as in “Did you fedex that package?” “Yes, I fedexed it an hour ago.” Can you think of other companies whose names have become verbs?
And, did you ever notice on their logo that the space inside “Ex” is an arrow?