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What Else Should ICG Offer?

So, what else would you like to see us do?

I walked into my local Target the other day (if you don’t have one near you, Target is a pretty big national retailer… some people even call them “the upscale Walmart”), and was surprised to see them remodeling the store. I say surprised, because to my eyes, it looked perfectly fine before (they had previously remodeled only a few years ago). But this time, they’re not just remodeling – they’re actually expanding, and getting into the food business. There was a big sign saying “Fresh Produce coming soon”.

Really? Target is going to sell fresh produce? Ok, that’s neat, I suppose. As my late Grandmother would say: “you can never have enough fresh cabbage” (actually, Grams, you CAN have enough cabbage. And although I never told you this, I will now – I never really liked the cabbage stew. But I digress).

The point is, it got me thinking about how many businesses expand and grow in fairly profound ways. I think most of us can remember when Amazon.com sold just books, Best Buy didn’t sell washers and dryers, and Target wasn’t in the cabbage business. But all that has changed – businesses seem to continually grow and expand what they offer. It’s almost the American way – you must grow to survive. So where does that leave us here at ICG?

We started with technology and financial back end, but pretty quickly, portals because a big part of our business. It was almost by accident, really, but portals were a logical step, because they tied in to what we were already doing rather nicely. In fact, to run an efficient financial operation where millions of dollars are moved around, portals are almost paramount.

Along the way, we’ve introduced different portal types – Vendor Portals, Customer Finance Portals, Contract Portals, etc. And there are more variations coming down the pipeline (we never stop trying to make client’s operations run better.) But aside from Portals, what else should we be doing? Should we follow the Amazon model and start selling pipe cleaners, coffee mugs, and rutabaga jam (yuck)? I would say probably not – we’ll continue doing what we do best. Because in all honesty, we do it really well. But if you have something else you want to see, we’re all ears (no cabbage, though!)

Posted on June 18, 2012