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How to extract first letter of each word from cell?

Supposing you have a list of countries’ name in your worksheet, and now, you need to extract the first letter of each word in the cell as following screenshots shown. Normally, there is no direct feature to pick up the first letter of each word in Excel. But, here, I can talk about a useful way to solve this task.

doc-extract-first-letter1

Extract first letter of each word from Cell with User Defined Function

 

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arrow blue right bubbleExtract first letter of each word from Cell with User Defined Function

 


 

In Excel, you can create a User Defined Function to extract the first letters of every words in a cell. Please do as this:

1. Hold down the ALT + F11 keys to open the Microsoft Visual Basic for Applications window.

2. Click Insert > Module, and paste the following code in the Module Window.< /p>

Function GetFirstLetters(rng As Range) As String
'Update 20140325
    Dim arr
    Dim I As Long
    arr = VBA.Split(rng, " ")
    If IsArray(arr) Then
        For I = LBound(arr) To UBound(arr)
            GetFirstLetters = GetFirstLetters & Left(arr(I), 1)
        Next I
    Else
        GetFirstLetters = Left(arr, 1)
    End If
End Function

3. Then save and close this code, go back the worksheet, and enter this formula =GetFirstLetters(A2) (A2 indicates the cell which you want to extract the first letter, you can change it as you need) into a blank cell. See screenshot:

doc-extract-first-letter1

4. And then press Enter key, and select cell B2, then drag the fill handle to the cells that you want to apply this formula. And all the first letters have been extracted from the series of words, see screenshot:

doc-extract-first-letter1


Related article:

How to extract first / last / nth word from text string in Excel?

 


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Comments (15)
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This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
i want to know how date is converted to text. for example 11.02.1998 as Eleven February Nineteen Ninety Eight
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Thanks you are the best
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Thank you very much.. its working.. u rocks
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Very helpful. Exactly what I was after.
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Please include this part: If you create a function called DISCOUNT in a workbook called Personal.xlsb and you call that function from another workbook, you must type =personal.xlsb!discount(), not simply =discount(). https://support.office.com/en-us/article/Create-Custom-Functions-in-Excel-2007-2f06c10b-3622-40d6-a1b2-b6748ae8231f
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
i think it has one bug, it's automatically removed from module when sheet is closed, need to again every time when open sheet same process to be required, please advice how to save this formula in excel permanently.
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Pls save excel as Excel Macro-Enablel work book.
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Подскажите пожалуйста, можно ли модифицировать код чтобы забиралась не первые а Заглавные буквы?
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
This code is good for upto five words, where D20 is the cell with data.



=IF(ISERR(LEFT($D$20,1)&MID($D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20)+1,1)
&MID($D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20)+1)+1,1)
&MID($D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20)+1)+1)+1,1)
&MID($D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20,SEARCH(" ",
$D$20)+1)+1)+1)+1,1)),IF(ISERR(LEFT($D$20,1)&MID($D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20)+1,1)
&MID($D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20)+1)+1,1)
&MID($D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20)+1)+1)+1,1)),
IF(ISERR(LEFT($D$20,1)&MID($D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20)+1,1)
&MID($D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20)+1)+1,1)),
IF(ISERR(LEFT($D$20,1)&MID($D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20)+1,1)),
IF(ISERR(LEFT($D$20,1)),"",LEFT($D$20,1)),LEFT($D$20,1)
&MID($D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20)+1,1)),LEFT($D$20,1)&MID($D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20)+1,1)
&MID($D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20)+1)+1,1)),
LEFT($D$20,1)&MID($D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20)+1,1)
&MID($D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20)+1)+1,1)
&MID($D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20)+1)+1)+1,1)),LEFT($D$20,1)
&MID($D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20)+1,1)&MID($D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20)+1)+1,1)
&MID($D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20)+1)+1)+1,1)
&MID($D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20,SEARCH(" ",$D$20)+1)
+1)+1)+1,1))
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
This is awesome. Such a time saver
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Why is this giving me the first 2 letters in each word?
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
How to create space between the letters?

South Korea= S K
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Hi, Gyawali
If you want to add space for each character, please apply the following VBA code:
Function GetFirstLetters(Rng As Range) As String
'Updateby Extendoffice
    Dim xStr
    Dim arr
    Dim I As Long
    xStr = " "
    arr = VBA.Split(Rng, " ")
    If IsArray(arr) Then
        For I = LBound(arr) To UBound(arr)
            GetFirstLetters = GetFirstLetters & Left(arr(I), 1) & xStr
        Next I
    Else
        GetFirstLetters = Left(arr, 1) & xStr
    End If
End Function


After insert the code, and then apply this formula: =GetFirstLetters(A2) to get the result you need.
Please try, hope it can help you!
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Wondering how to add this into the existing formula I have that works to bring the value over from a cell in another sheet? I only want to bring over the first character in each cell. Here's the formula

=IF(LOOKUP(2,1/(OriginalSubmission!D:D<>""),ROW(OriginalSubmission!D:D))=ROW(OriginalSubmission!D4),"",INDIRECT("OriginalSubmission!D5:"&"D"&(LOOKUP(2,1/(OriginalSubmission!D:D<>""),ROW(OriginalSubmission!D:D)))))
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Hello, SARAH
Do you mean extracting each first character in cells from another worksheet? If so, you just need to copy and paste the code in this article, and then apply this formula into another sheet.
=GetFirstLetters(OriginalSubmission!D4)


Note: OriginalSubmission is the sheet name that you want to extract charatcers from.
Please try, hope it can help you!
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