The rise of terrorist organization ISIS had a lot of negative effects, including on the business markets. ISIS Pharma, a San Diego-based biotech company decided to change its name, after months of speculations, according to Forbes, in order to avoid the distraction cause by the name and employees running into security issues when traveling internationally.
Starting with December 22, ISIS Pharma will be known as IONIS, as stated by the company’s CEO, Stanley Crooke. The executive also says that he decided upon this after months of brushing off colleagues, advisers and even random strangers.
Of course, Mr. Crooke’s decision was taken in order to discard any liaison the company shared with the Islamic State.
“My underlying concern was that the name was a distraction,” he said. “To spend any time during a four-minute TV interview, for example, discussing our name, rather than focusing on how exciting things are at Isis today with three drugs finishing Phase 3 development and a pipeline of 40 drugs, just makes no sense.”
The first time when a possible name change for ISIS Pharma was mentioned was in September 2014, during an interview with CNBC’s Jim Cramer, host of the “Mad Money”. Mr. Cramer is well known for being an evangelist of the pharmaceutical company’s stock, so he suggested Stanley Crooke that this name is slowly becoming a problem, as the terrorist organization was often present on newspapers’ headlines.
“You can’t laugh off things,” Cramer said to Crooke. “We’ve been Isis for 25 years and I don’t feel like I want to capitulate to these terrorists by changing my name,” the CEO responded. “They can change their name.”
The company’s new name, Ionis, wasn’t inspired by anything special, but apparently, it was the best choices from the ones the Stanley Crooked was presented with.