Some organizations flee from the name ‘Isis’

A number of brands that share the name with the Iraqi terrorist group have announced name changes. Others are holding their ground.

There are few names as reviled as ISIS in the Western world today. The group, also known as the Islamic State or ISIL, has extended a path of terror through the Middle East.

In response, organizations that share the name “Isis” (also the name of the Egyptian goddess of love) are now distancing themselves from the name, in some cases changing it altogether.

ISIS Equity Partners, a UK private equity firm, is changing its name, with managing director Wol Kolade issuing the following statement:

Given ongoing events in Syria and Iraq, it will come as no surprise to you to learn that we have decided to change our name. We are no longer prepared to share it with a terrorist organisation.

We will hopefully be in a position to unveil our new brand in the coming weeks, however it is very much business as usual as far as we are concerned. Even though the name above the door will change, we remain focused and committed to invest in and support high growth UK companies run by entrepreneurial management teams.

Other companies named Isis have also made the change. Isis Wallet, a mobile payment company, changed its name to Softcard.

A Florida development company formerly known as Isis Downtown is now 3 Thirty Three Downtown, with not much explanation other than a small line of text on its website, stating, “Formerly known as Isis downtown.”

Not every organization named Isis is changing its moniker, however. Isis Pharmaceuticals chairman Dr. Stanley Crooke told CNBC that his company has no plans to change its name.

“I don’t feel like I want to capitulate to these terrorists by changing my name,” he said. “They can change their name.”

Businesses in Oxford, along the Isis section of the River Thames, have been using the name for years. Local businesses there have encouraged publications to use the abbreviation ISIL (Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant) instead.

No word yet on whether the FX animated comedy “Archer” will nix the name of its fictitious CIA-like organization, but some are calling on the show to do just that.

Topics: PR

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