Where this brand name trend came from, we can’t be certain, but if there’s anything Web 2.0 has taught me, it’s that companies need to stand out and snap up a good domain name at the same time. This looks like one of the easier solutions.
The difference is while it’s still a form of “bastarized text”, it’s not a variation on spelling that retains how the word is pronounced, but harkens back to the Roman alphabet where the glyph V did double duty.
WEΛTHER is the lone name that gets the A replaced instead of a U, and together with Plovgh look less intuitive to pronounce compared to the rest probably because there are adjacent vowels. I wonder how much of an issue would pronunciation be to brand familiarity and loyalty. Meanwhile, Plovgh is in a discipline farthest from the familiar tech and design startups, so its community may be the most alienated by such a spelling trend.