Isis Pharma ditches its terrorism-tainted name, will now be Ionis Pharmaceuticals
- Isis Pharmaceuticals on Friday changed its name to Ionis Pharmaceuticals after years of pressure to rebrand.
- The new ticker symbol will be IONS.
- Although originally named after an Egyptian goddess, the company's name (and ISIS stock ticker) became too associated with the Islamic State terror group, also known as ISIS.
Although it may seem an obvious change, this 25-year-old company had a hard time letting go. Just a month ago, CEO Stanley Crooke argued changing the name of the company would be a capitulation to terror.
One month later though, the pressure proved too much. Given the power of media and language, Ionis smartly sought to distance itself from negative headlines.
Ionis has done well inking deals with collaborators such as AstraZeneca and Biogen, and advancing its programs in neurodegeneration and gene therapy.