NEW YORK — After 201 years in the textile industry, the DuPont name is making its exit.
The Wilmington, Del.-based company’s textiles and interiors division on Wednesday changed its name to Invista. The business had been called DuPont Textiles & Interiors.
The word — which coincidentally translates to the imperative form of the verb, “invest,” in Portuguese — was created for DuPont by the New York brand consultancy, Enterprise IG.
“The name in itself means nothing,” said Bill Ghitis, president of global apparel at the $6.3 billion business. “What is meaningful is that the name is symbolic in our journey in separating from DuPont and thriving in the textile industry with our customers.”
As reported, DuPont and Koch Industries have disclosed they are in talks about the sale of the textile business to Koch. Ghitis said DuPont managers had run the name change past Koch, and that whether the sale goes through or if DuPont sells the business to another corporate buyer or to the public, the Invista name will stick.
Koch officials did not respond to calls Wednesday.
The names in Invista’s brand roster, including Lycra, Coolmax, Stainmaster and Antron, will not be changing, Ghitis emphasized.
Ghitis said the consulting firm had been working on a new name for the business for the past year, developing 600 possibilities along the way. In a world where items from bottled water to allergy medications are branded and aggressively marketed, coming up with a new brand name that isn’t trademarked somewhere, is pronounceable in many languages — and “is not a swear word” in some language, Ghitis noted — can prove challenging.
Among the names on the reject pile were Geospan, NeoTex and Scienza, according to an Invista spokeswoman.
The new name is accompanied by a new logo, featuring three nonsymmetric interlocking rings. For a yet-to-be-determined period of time, it will carry what executives described as a “linking line,” “Built on DuPont Innovation,” and a tag line, “Step Forward.”
Ghitis declined to disclose how much the company had spent on developing the name.
Over the next few months, the company plans to slowly introduce the Invista name to the trade through advertisements. Executives also broke the news to the businesses’ 18,000 employees in a series of meetings and briefings on Wednesday. Their new business cards will be coming in the next few days, officials said, though a few key executives, including Ghitis, received their cards Tuesday.
DuPont first revealed its plans to sell or spin off its textiles business last year.
Ghitis said he believes the name is symbolic of the company’s drive into the future.
“We’re very proud about our heritage, what DuPont has provided us with,” he said. “We know [that] to succeed in the textile industry we’ve got to become more cost competitive. We’ve got to bring innovations at an even faster pace than we have been.”