The Short, Unhappy Life of Optiva Credit Union
From late 2006 to early 2007, a lot of Iowa City ink was spilled over a proposal by the University of Iowa Community Credit Union to change its name to “Optiva,” a name which had been proposed by a branding agency and selected by the board for conveying optimism and tiva-ness. Those were heady days: mortgage-backed securities were hot and creaky and loans were easy to come by, Hillary Clinton was reality and Barack Obama a dream, and Facebook hadn’t yet flattened everyone’s relations to gathering around a news trough. Many people then said “I see myself in University of Iowa and Community, but not in Optiva, and I don’t like that,” and they took a series of moves that, despite long odds and unlikely circumstances, succeeded in embarrassing the credit union’s board of directors and killing Optiva. I chronicled some of that story in a series of blog posts at the time:
Now, five years after Optiva died, thefinancialbrand.com has revisited the story and written what may be the most comprehensive exposé of the controversy there will be.