Peeking Under the Hood of Your Strategic Alliance

Nina L. Kaufman, Esq.

Nina L. Kaufman, Esq.

Nina L. Kaufman, Esq., owner of Ask The Business Lawyer, is an award-winning business attorney, speaker, and Entrepreneur Magazine online contributor. She saves consulting and professional services companies time, money, and aggravation by serving as their outsourced legal counsel.

Posted on January 26, 2015 in Planning & Advisors, Strategic Alliances

A strategic alliance offers a lot of promise to companies both local and global.  The promise of new markets.  The promise of ways to better serve existing markets.  The promise of, frankly, more money rolling in.  That’s all good.  But there are aspects to investigating your strategic alliance partner that many companies fail to do — even major corporations, as described in Den Taylor’s blogpost, “Strategic Alliances — Look Before You Leap!

Like buying a car, evaluating a potential strategic alliance partner should involve more than just kicking the tires and admiring the chassis.  You want to look under the hood to make sure that the engine is functioning properly.  You want to speak to other owners of the car to learn about their experiences (is the car constantly in the shop?  Does it make strange noises?  Do the seals leak?).

Similarly, you want to ask around about your alliance partner?  Have other alliances gone smoothly?  If not, why not?  Can you pull up a Dun and Bradstreet report to get a sense of their financial condition?  As Den Taylor points out, had the companies done a bit more due diligence/strategic intelligence, they probably would have rejected their alliance partners out of hand!

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