'Too many Respiras': Smoking cessation health tech company throws out overused name as it rebrands to Qnovia

How do you deal with a problem like Respira? For this health tech company, which must compete with so many similarly named companies and drugs, the remedy is simple: out with the old, and in with the new.

And that new name—in what would be a brilliant Scrabble-scoring word if it were allowed—is Qnovia, about as far away from Respira as you can get. That ends the four-year history of the health tech company as it officially rebrands, with an accompanying new website and corporate refresh.

The rebrand comes as the California-based company looks to become the first prescription inhalable smoking cessation therapy, which Qnovia sees as an upgrade to nicotine replacement therapies. It’s all still early-stage, but the company is nearing an FDA submission to start clinical trials and is going about seeking new cash to support those trials.

There are simply “too many Respiras including at least two other health tech companies, as well as an air-purifying garden and a carbon credit company,” a Qnovia spokesperson told Fierce Pharma Marketing

He said the rebranding became necessary “to avoid confusion,” especially as Qnovia moves from that quiet preclinical period and into the more public clinical trial stage.

This is also a big branding move from Brian Quigley, who stepped up as the new CEO of the company just last month. Quigley was previously the chief operating officer and before that an executive at Altria Group. He took over from founder and former chief Mario Danek, who moved down to become its CTO.

“This rebranding will further differentiate the company’s technology and products from others in the biotechnology space,” the company said in a press release.

This is the second life science company name change this month, coming just a week after COVID drugmaker Adagio changed its name to the equally baffling Invivyd amid a series of setbacks in its pipeline this year.