Alliance Fundamentals — Video

This video explains alliance strategy fundamentals:

  1. Rules of Success
  2. Selecting a Partner
  3. Managing an Alliance over Time
  4. Profiting from an Alliance
  5. Small vs Large Partners

The video is composed of short excerpts from a keynote address delivered by Ben Gomes-Casseres in Copenhagen, November 2013. All rights reserved.

via Youtube: Alliance Fundamentals, by Ben Gomes-Casseres

Google sells Motorola to Lenovo – Rethink Wireless

Good analysis at Rethink Wireless. The numbers: “Google paid $12.5bn for its prey, but Motorola came with $3bn in cash and its new parent did sell on the set-top box division for $2.4bn. That leaves about $7bn, and Google said at the time that the patents – most of which it retains, were worth about $5.5bn. The Lenovo deal includes $1.41bn in cash and Lenovo stock, plus $1.5bn to be paid in a three-year promissory note.”

See full article at Google sells Motorola to Lenovo – Rethink Wireless.

2014 Will Be the Year of the Business Remix – Harvard Business Review

2014 will be the year of the “business remix.” I see a rise in business combinations of all kinds — not just M&A, but also partnerships, alliances, joint ventures, and consortia that stop short of being full mergers. But it will be important for managers to know when to use each of these types of deals.

Read full blog here:  2014 Will Be the Year of the Business Remix – Ben Gomes-Casseres – Harvard Business Review.

Open systems in mobile and lessons from Unix — from Rethink Wireless

Good analysis of the challenges of open systems and — in my words — the tradeoffs between value creation and value capture in constellation strategy.

This is by Caroline Gabriel, analyst at Rethink Wireless in UK:

In the week that commentators were bemoaning the death of Unix, it was timely to remember how many times we have been beguiled by the dream of an open, cross-platform operating system, free from the control of evil vendors. Unix, of course, failed to deliver that dream, splintering into many slightly incompatible, and firmly vendor-controlled, pieces.

Read full posting here: Mobile unity an illusion, but that’s not all bad – Rethink Wireless.

Yahoo, Tumblr, and the Loyalty Factor – Harvard Business Review

As Yahoo goes through with its acquisition of Tumblr, CEO Marissa Mayer may have a user rebellion on her hands. The early reaction from the Tumblr community is not encouraging — blogs lit up with memes of crying babies and apocalyptic rants upon the announcement of the news. The uproar was bolstered by stories critical of Yahoo’s earlier acquisitions, and fueled by rumors that Yahoo may introduce advertising to the popular blogging site.

Read more: Yahoo, Tumblr, and the Loyalty Factor  - Ben Gomes-Casseres – Harvard Business Review.

HP, Oracle, and the False Security of Contracts – Harvard Business Review

Hewlett Packard and Oracle are embroiled in a marriage spat that would put Hollywood celebs to shame. But because this is Silicon Valley, it is, well, technical.

HP is suing Oracle for breaching a contract. Oracle says there is no such contract. The companies asked for a pre-trial ruling on whether a contract exists. All the while, their online status page still says “married.” What gives?

Read full blog here:  HP, Oracle, and the False Security of Contracts – Ben Gomes-Casseres – Harvard Business Review.

Old Model of Competition is Dead – Video

The shape of business rivalry is changing. You can no longer go it alone. You’ll need to band together with other firms to win in the marketplace. Many managers and analysts don’t yet recognize this new reality. This is part of an 8-part series by Ben Gomes-Casseres on alliance strategy (see http://www.alliancestrategy.com).

via Old Model of Competition is Dead – YouTube.

Three Rules of Success – Video

All business combinations depend on three simple rules. In the rush to do a deal, managers often forget one or two of these. The consequences can be costly. Learn the rules and apply them. This is part of an 8-part series by Ben Gomes-Casseres on alliance strategy (see also http://www.alliancestrategy.com).

via Three Rules of Success – YouTube.

Relationship Spectrum – Video

What kind of business combination do you need? There is a spectrum of possibilities, from tight acquisitions to loose transactions. Understand the fundamentals behind these choices before you decide. This is part of an 8-part series by Ben Gomes-Casseres on alliance strategy (see also http://www.alliancestrategy.com).

via Relationship Spectrum – YouTube.

Case Study Insights – Video

Learn from the experience of others. But don’t just pick up tricks and tips from them. Case studies yield deeper lessons when you look at practice through the lens of modern business theory. This is part of an 8-part series by Ben Gomes-Casseres on alliance strategy (see also http://www.alliancestrategy.com).

via Case Study Insights – YouTube.

Compete in a Multi-polar World – Video

The world is more interconnected than ever before. There are also more centers of power. That is why you need to engage deeply with partners. This demands a change in culture for most firms. This is part of an 8-clip series by Ben Gomes-Casseres on alliance strategy (see also http://www.alliancestrategy.com).

via Compete in a Multi-polar World – YouTube.

Manage Your Network – Video

Alliances can save your business, but having too many alliances can kill it. Open innovation strategies sometimes lead to over-extension of your network. Be sure you will be in a position to capture value from your group. This is part of an 8-part series by Ben Gomes-Casseres on alliance strategy (see also http://www.alliancestrategy.com).

via Manage Your Network – YouTube.

Organizing Alliance Capability – Video

Your internal organization can make or break your external alliances. Smart companies build an alliance capability that balances the need for centralization with the benefits of decentralization. This is part of an 8-part series by Ben Gomes-Casseres on alliance strategy (see also http://www.alliancestrategy.com)

via Organizing Alliance Capability – YouTube.

How to Manage Multiple Partnerships – Harvard Business Review

If you think politicians have a tough time staying monogamous, take a look at big corporations. Most partnerships that start out with promises of exclusivity soon run into tensions, cheating, or divorce. It’s better to accept that, in business, one partner rarely fulfills all your strategic needs. You must learn to live with — not avoid — polygamy. The key is to manage your multiple partners and not let your relationships run wild.

Read full blog here: How to Manage Multiple Partnerships – Ben Gomes-Casseres – Harvard Business Review.

Managing High-Stakes Partners – Harvard Business Review

When I started to research business alliances over 25 years ago, an executive at General Motors told me: “If the business is worth doing, we’ll do it ourselves.” Today, few major companies still believe that they can go it alone — even when a business venture is worth a lot. External partnerships are not only more common, but as business bets go, they now involve much higher stakes. A company’s value can rise and fall dramatically by how well it manages partnerships. In this new world, you are worth as much as your external relationships.

Read full blog here: Managing High-Stakes Partners – Ben Gomes-Casseres – Harvard Business Review.

A Partnership Is Not a Purchase Order – Harvard Business Review

Scott McNealy, ex-CEO of Sun Microsystems, tweeted this message last month:

“Most over used phrase in business is ‘strategic partner.’ Favorite partnership for me is a purchase order. Defined charter, beginning, end.”

That is precisely why many external partnerships fail. True collaboration is much more than a purchase order. Setting up an external partnership as if it were a PO, at best, leaves value on the table. At worst, it leads to conflict and value destruction.

Read full blog here: A Partnership Is Not a Purchase Order – Ben Gomes-Casseres – Harvard Business Review.

The Non-Deal Between Japan Airlines and Delta – Harvard Business Review

Japan Airlines has chosen to stay hitched to American Airlines and not bolt to Delta. In a way, Delta may still come out a winner. Though the details are not yet out, Delta’s courting may well have forced American and its Oneworld allies to pay upwards of $1.4 billion just to hold on to their existing partner in Japan. [Author's note: Whether or not they pay in cash or kind will remain to be seen, because JAL has so far refused the investment.]

Read full blog here: The Non-Deal Between Japan Airlines and Delta – Ben Gomes-Casseres – Harvard Business Review.

Nummi: What Toyota Learned and GM Didn’t – Harvard Business Review

Last week, Toyota announced it will close the plant of New United Motor Manufacturing Incorporated (Nummi), its one-time joint venture with GM to make cars in California. (GM had pulled out of the JV in July.) It was third-page news in the financial section, but the passing of an era nonetheless. Nummi represented the first footstep of Toyota in US production, taken in the early 1980s, deep in the last recession. The plant never made money, but allowed Toyota to learn a lot — less so GM.

Read full blog here: Nummi: What Toyota Learned and GM Didn’t – Ben Gomes-Casseres – Now, New, Next – Harvard Business Review.

Outsourcing: Where Will You Draw the Line? – Harvard Business Review

The Defense Department is due to report to Congress that in Afghanistan, U.S. troops continue to be outnumbered by private contractors. The contractors are described as performing auxiliary duties so that military personnel can focus on core tasks. Sound familiar? How many companies do you know that have outsourced “non-core” activities to focus on its “core competence”?

Read full blog here: Outsourcing: Where Will You Draw the Line? – Ben Gomes-Casseres – Harvard Business Review.

Microsoft and Yahoo: Too Little, Too Late, Too Hyped – Harvard Business Review

It took over a year to for Microsoft and Yahoo to to forge their alliance in the internet search and advertising business (not counting the previous time the new partners were eyeing each other from across the room). Hence you’d expect a powerful combination of assets, structured to deliver value to users and shareholders. Guess again.

This alliance is fraught with problems.

Read full blog here: Microsoft and Yahoo: Too Little, Too Late, Too Hyped – Ben Gomes-Casseres – Now, New, Next – Harvard Business Review.

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