Colombina S.A.: Entering the Ice Cream Market
In March 2017, the vice-president of the ice cream division at Colombina S.A. (Colombina), was in her office at the company's headquarters in Cali, Colombia. She was reviewing the growth figures for the company's ice cream business, for which she was accountable. The sales target set for the company in 2010 was US$1 billion by 2020, and the ice cream segment would play a fundamental role in reaching that target. The vice-president remembered what Colombina's chief executive officer had told employees the year before at the last strategic planning meeting: "It is simple; in order to reach the sales target, we must continue to do three things: achieve organic growth of the businesses we already have, open new markets or new businesses, and acquire companies with which we can generate synergies with our ongoing businesses." Despite having invoiced over $40 million in ice cream in 2016, a growth of 1 per cent over 2015, the vice-president was aware of the challenge this strategic guideline meant for her category, which led her to consider options for increasing sales and profits. What market opportunities should the ice cream division exploit? What channels should it grow? Should particular channels be grown more than others? Should the product portfolio be expanded? The authors Enrique Ramirez and Juanita Cajiao Saenz are affiliated with Universidad ICESI.