Collaboration is the name of the game. You might have heard me say that before.

Lately, I have seen an increase in the announcements of acquisitions that companies make. Apple acquires Shazam, DSM acquires BioCare, Philips acquires VitalHealth, to mention just a few. These announcements make me wonder. Why acquire, why not team up and collaborate? Are these companies back to owning and controlling?

On the other hand, I have also seen a rising number of collaborations in all kind of formats. These are not always announced as strategic alliances. Sometimes they are expressed as a partnership or collaboration. Like how Apple teams up with Heathrow Airport. How DSM announces a partner conference for innovation. And how Philips teams up with 3D printing leaders.


Acquisition or collaboration?

You see, it is not black and white. The same companies that acquire, also team up. There is no simple answer to when to acquire or when to collaborate in alliances. It depends …

“Hey Peter, these are all large businesses with large budgets.”



I hear you; when you are in a small business, you might think that way. Acquiring another company might be more difficult for you. However, collaboration in partnerships and alliances is everywhere. Read for instance this recent article. That describes how Massachusetts based startup Purple Carrot is building their business based on partnerships.

Every company can increase their success with the right form of partnering. Teaming up does not require a large budget. In fact, growing in partnership is often more cost-effective and faster than building it organically.


A precursor to success

One mention of warning though: regardless of the size of your organization, you should not dive in head over heel. Preparation is a precursor to success. Large corporate alliances can take many months to prepare. That is partly due to their decision structure and processes. For your smaller company, alliances can be created in a few days or weeks. Your decision structure is often agiler and requires fewer people to be involved.


Solid preparation saves money

Following a solid preparation can feel overwhelming. Diving in head over heel might look easier and faster. Indeed, it might look that way. But can you afford the costly mistakes of failing partnerships? A solid alliance preparation of only a few days will save you money and increase your chance of success!


You don’t have to go it alone. Experienced guidance is available! Let me show you the fast path to your alliance success. Let me show you how alliances can help you grow your company faster, easier and more cost-effective.

Schedule your exploratory call to discuss.