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Belgian Chocolate Maker ISIS Changes Name to Avoid Confusion
   2014-11-07 11:09:43    CRIENGLISH.com      Web Editor: Li Bin

Belgian chocolate maker ISIS is changing its name to 'Libeert' to avoid being associated with the terrorist organization identifying itself by the same name. [Photo: italosuisse.com]

Belgian chocolate maker ISIS is changing its name to 'Libeert' to avoid being associated with the terrorist organization identifying itself by the same name.

ISIS is the acronym derived from the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, the jihadist group that arose to prominence in the Syrian civil war and now has invaded parts of Iraq. The group changed its name to the Islamic State in June.

It will be the second name-change for the company. Based in Comines near the French border, the chocolate producer chose the original name, Italo Suisse, because its founder learned his trade in Italy and Switzerland.

The company then changed its name to "ISIS" last year to reduce confusion and emphasize its Belgian roots, according to the company's manager.

But a lull in orders over the summer prompted the company to change its name to "Libeert", third generation owner Ignace Libeert said on Wednesday.

The company said it would never have chosen the name had they known about the Islamic State. It ended up being a costly mistake to the business.

"It has (made) quite an impact (on our business). It's very difficult to say how much (the cost has been) because we didn't get the orders, but we have an estimation for about two, three million euros, which is quite a number," said Libeert.

Chocolate bars bearing the name ISIS have already hit the shops for Christmas, so the company is now preparing for the Easter holidays. It will take until January 2015 for the full transition to the company's new name to be completed.

Libeert, which dates back to 1923, makes more than 5,000 tonnes of chocolate each year, with a turnover of about 35 million euros ($44.17 million).

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