A Belgian chocolate maker that changed its name to ISIS last year has realised it made a disastrous decision after customers stopped buying its products, An Nahar reports.
Italo Suisse went for the new name since it had no link with either Italy or Switzerland, instead deciding on ISIS. The company dates back to 1923 and chose the original name because its founder learned his trade in Italy and Switzerland. By 2013, its managers had decided to call it something else.
However, its customers have been mixing up the brand of confectionery with the terrorist organisation ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria), even though the latter are not known for their chocolate making skills.
“We chose ISIS as that was the brand name of our pralines and tablets,” said the chocolatier’s Marketing Manager Desiree Libeert. “Had we known there was a terrorist organization with the same name, we would have never chosen that.”
Belgian chocolate makers ISIS have been in business since 1923 but now that people are refraining from buying their products, the company has changed the name to “Libeert” in reference to the owners’ family name according to Time Magazine.
“We had international customers saying that they could no longer stock our chocolate as consumers had only negative associations with the name,” Libeert said.
The company makes more than 5,000 tonnes of chocolate each year, with a turnover of about 35 million euros ($44.17 million).
Last month Business Insider magazine reported that a UK private equity company called ISIS Equity Partners were also going to change their name.
The Daily Mail reported that the US Patent and Trademark office records over 270 products, services or businesses with the name ‘isis’. And in the UK, Companies House has details of 35 companies with the name which are still trading, including ‘Isis aromatherapy ltd’ and ‘isis angels network.’
‘The Isis’ is the name given to part of the River Thames in the South East of England and consequently has provided the inspiration for many businesses in that area.
Isis Residential Services in Surrey told Breitbart News that they had seen a couple of people taking photos outside their branches but in general the view of customers was that they were not going to ‘give in’ and change their names because of the terrorist group.
ISIS, the jihadist group which arose in the Syrian civil war and is now causing terror in Iraq, changed their name to just ‘Islamic State’ in June. But they are still known by a variety of acronyms in the media including ISIS and ISIL.