Thirty-three suspected strains of the family Pasteurellaceae isolated from the oral cavity of polar and brown bears were characterized by genotypic and phenotypic tests. Phylogenetic analysis of partial 16S rRNA gene and rpoB sequences showed that the investigated isolates formed two closely related monophyletic groups, representing two novel species of a new genus. Based on 16S rRNA gene sequence comparison Bibersteinia trehalosi was the closest related species with a validly published name, with 95.4 % similarity to the polar bear group and 94.4 % similarity to the brown bear group. Otariodibacter oris was the closest related species based on rpoB sequence comparison with a similarity of 89.8 % with the polar bear group and 90 % with the brown bear group. The new genus could be separated from existing genera of the family Pasteurellaceae by three to ten phenotypic characters, and the two novel species could be separated from each other by two phenotypic characters. It is proposed that the strains should be classified as representatives of a new genus, Ursidibacter gen. nov., with two novel species: the type species Ursidibacter maritimus sp. nov., isolated from polar bears (type strain Pb43106T = CCUG 65144T = DSM 28137T, DNA G+C content 39.3 mol%), and Ursidibacter arcticus sp. nov., isolated from brown bears (type strain Bamse61T = CCUG 65145T = DSM 28138T).