From the Inside Flap
"From the democratization of the automobile to the idea that computers should serve people rather than the other way around, the most successful businessesnot just the ones that made money, but the ones that made a differenceeach built themselves around a higher sense of purpose, and then elevated their brand to sit at the right hand of leadership as its spiritual guide."
From the Introduction
Since 1996, ING Direct has grown from a mere concept to a global enterprise, with over 20 million customers in nine countries. From the time this Internet-based direct bank first launched in Canada,it focused on serving ordinary people who felt abandoned by today's money-hungry financial institutions. In an industry dominated by big banks with little patience for their customers, ING Direct has always strived to be differenta rebel with a cause, if you willand in doing so, they've become the most successful online banking venture in history.
The Orange Code recounts ING Direct's intriguing story, explaining the philosophy of its founder Arkadi Kuhlmannwho believes in the power of individuals to control their financial destinyand his long-running partnership with Bruce Philp, the branding consultant who helped him make ING Direct a cause to its own people and a household name across North America.
In an entertaining and inspiring style, Kuhlmann and Philp discuss their unconventional approach to business strategy, leadership, and management that built ING Direct. From refusing to promote credit cards to college students to pointing out frivolous expenses, Kuhlmann and Philp not only address the practical principles that have propelled ING Direct to the top, but they also help you understand how the cause of personal financial empowerment has made everyone a winner in the ING Direct story.
While the idea of a business as a causewith a brand as its constitutionmight seem idealistic and even naïve in theory, it's not anymore. The level of success achieved by ING Direct holds some important lessons and offers some much-needed inspiration to a business world that could use a little of both right now.
From the Back Cover
Praise for The Orange Code
"Imagine a business model for a bank in the twenty first century founded on principles like paying customers high interest rates on savings while charging them low interest rates on loans. Imagine a bank that has harnessed the power of the Internet and gone on to confound the skeptics while earning the admiration and loyalty of customers and shareholders alike. Imagine no more, because ING Direct—led by founding CEO Arkadi Kuhlmann—is here to stay and has begun to change the color of money from green to orange for a lot of Americans."
—Tom Carper, U.S. Senator, former governor of Delaware
"Kuhlmann and Philp show how innovation linked to a lived set of values and an uncompromising focus on the customer can power an organization to extraordinary success in a short period of time. Their story of the Orange journey offers genuine insights every step along the way."
—Chad Holliday, Chairman and CEO, DuPont
"The Orange Code is a refreshing look at how the intangibles of leadership, corporate culture, brand, and customer experience can blend together to form a new class of assets that can become more important than the tangible assets in ensuring the success of an enterprise."
—Chris Matthews, CEO, The Hay Group
"You would have to be insane to try and build a new brand in the brutally competitive market of retail banking, but that is what they did. An incredible story of determination, focus, and maybe a little luck! A must-read for anyone with the goal of building a brand or business."
—Kevin O'Leary, Chairman, Gencap Funds Inc., and "investor at large" for BNN, CBC, and the Discovery Channel