10 years of the ICG!

16 Feb 2012 | ICG News & Announcements

10 years of the ICG!

Our Chairman, Andrew Smith, reflects on our 10 year anniversary.

The ICG then and now

Purely by chance I discovered in early February that the ICG was officially incorporated as a Limited Company on 25th February 2002 – almost exactly 10 years ago! So we must celebrate! (Ideas please. I’ll have something extra planned for our next London members meeting on Thursday 8th March – details and book at /event/3000073/doing-business-abroad-the-opportunities).

It’s amazing to reflect on the changes of the last decade. Today’s ICG is very much centred on technology. Just think of all the recent stuff around social media, our shiny new website, instant egroup messaging and, of course, instant video highlights of the brutal slaughter of a haggis (see

Once upon a time in 2002…

It was all so different in early 2002. The ICG’s then Chairman, Stephen Bairfelt of Purple Research, takes up the story of the worrying gestation of the fledgling independent ICG:

‘…February 2002 sounds about right because my daughter was very young at the time and I remember it being a really stressful time. We were being cast adrift (by the Market Research Society), for reasons we didn’t really understand and were not sure whether the ICG could survive financially.

I think we had about 120 members at the time and I set a target of reaching 150 in 6 months. The rest of the committee thought this could not be achieved (and by the way the committee then was only 4-5 people, rather than the 10-12 today).  So I said as a priority we needed to:

  1. Expand the committee to take account of all our new responsibilities
  2. Grow the membership to give us more income
  3. Forge close ties with other ‘special interest groups’ like BIG, also set adrift from the MRS, so we could learn from each other…..

and all this while trying to run a business. The committee members at the time were magnificent and pulled us through.’

Now to celebrate!

So thanks Stephen – the team done well! The ICG is likely to welcome its 400th member during early 2012, and goes from strength to strength. But remember, it’s the membership that makes it tick and breathe in energy and ideas – so keep doing so please!

Andrew Smith had the honour of taking over as the third ICG Chairman in September 2007.

Andrew Smith

(Ed – please check out the events listings for celebrations near you!)