ApplePay and Google Wallet have snared most of the recent attention in the world of “digital wallets.”
But a 4-year-old brand, jointly run by Verizon Wireless, AT&T and T-Mobile, is being forced to rebrand itself because of developments totally beyond its control. Its name: ISIS Mobile Wallet.
In 2010, ISIS was a solid brand name: Short, simple, easy to remember. It was one of a handful of digital services that use a consumer’s mobile device – instead of a credit card or cash – to make payments. ISIS Mobile spent years lining up partners, building a platform, and working on trials before going nationwide.
Then came the recent prominence of the gruesome militant group ISIS (short for Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, when translated into English).
Says the firm’s CEO, “However coincidental, we have no desire to share a name with a group whose name has become synonymous with violence, and our hearts go out to those affected by this violence. As a company we have made the decision to rebrand.”
softcard1The new name, just announced: Softcard. It was chosen, says the company, to have a name and a visual identity with the “power, flexibility and simplicity to define our category.” Softcard can be used today at 200,000 U.S. locations.
The takeaway: Rebranding in midflight is always a marketing setback. But when you have to distance yourself from a militant terror group, there’s really no choice.