Social gaming developer ISIS Lab Corp. said today that it will change the name that it shares with the Mideast terror group known to some as the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.
Toronto-based ISIS, publicly traded on the Toronto Venture Exchange, did not reference the militant group in announcing the change, but it is the latest in a handful of companies that have been thrust into an association that London professor Nicholas O'Shaughressy has called "brand suicide."
Last week, the mobile payments start-up Isis Wallet said it would change its name to Softcard because of the Islamist group association. "However coincidental, we have no desire to share a name with this group and our hearts go out to those affected by this violence," CEO Michael Abbott said on Sept. 3.
Isis Lab Corp. said Sept. 11, a day after President Barack Obama declared a US-led global crackdown on the ISIS group, that its new moniker, Imperus Technologies, was selected to reflect its direction and strategy to be a "premier, online gaming company."
The start-up earlier this year enlisted tennis star Boris Becker as "brand ambassador" for its online gambling platform in development, ISIS Friends. It said Thursday that it is in the process of securing domain names, corporate names and trademarks for its new name.
On the flip side, Carlsbad, Calif.-based Isis Pharmaceuticals, which has the Nasdaq ticker symbol ISIS, said it considered a name change but decided to keep its identity for now as investors and stakeholders did not register alarm.