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Note:  This is an excerpt from my latest book, Drive One Direction: How to Unleash the Accelerating Power of Alignment. In the One Portfolio chapter, we highlight companies who unleashed the accelerating power of alignment with an intense focus on their product portfolio.

In 2004, Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah met as graduate students at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Two years later, they started HubSpot (NYSE: HUBS). The company now has over 52,000 customers (including SHIFTPOINTS) in more than 100 countries.

HubSpot built an impressive ecosystem of add-on products.

The company started as a software-as-a-service (SAAS) application for marketing. They evolved into an integrated suite that includes customer relationship management (CRM), sales, service, and more.

While only a few vendors offer what HubSpot calls the full “growth stack,” most customers require specialized add-on products to achieve their goals.

Choosing the right add-on products is a mind-numbing task. This segment of the software market is massively crowded. In fact, there are over 6,000 software vendors building specialized marketing, sales, and service products.

In addition, most customers require integrations between HubSpot and their other applications.

To address the problem, HubSpot developed an ecosystem called HubSpot Connect. It includes a portfolio of certified add-on products and application programming interfaces (APIs).

As a result, HubSpot now describes themselves as a “platform company.” They already boast over 200 software integrations with several new partners joining each month.

The HubSpot ecosystem expands the functionality of HubSpot’s core product offerings and helps customers find the add-on solutions that are right for their business.

“Our platform partners offer customers an incredible range of specialized capabilities they can easily add to HubSpot,” said Scott Brinker, HubSpot’s VP of platform ecosystem. “Together, we strive to make it a seamless experience.”

"We're laser-focused on scaling the HubSpot Connect partner program to give our customers all of the tools they need to grow their business," said Brad Coffey, Chief Strategy Officer at HubSpot.

Does your company have One Ecosystem of partners that adds value to your core offering?