Patterns of Strategic Alliances Between Rival Firms


Group Decision and Negotiation

1995, vol. 4, n°5, pp.429-452

Departments: Strategy & Business Policy, GREGHEC (CNRS)

Abstract: This article describes the results of a research project which examined 171 alliances set up by competing firms in an international context. It presents an empirically-based taxonomy of such alliances constructed on the basis of a set of variables chosen for their demonstrated or assumed influence on the evolution and outcomes of strategic partnerships. Three contrasted types of allliances are identified: quasi-concentration alliances, market penetration alliances and shared supply alliances. They differ according to two fundamental dimensions: their symmetrical or dissymmetrical nature and the way in which they alter competition. Legal structure, often emphasized in previous research on the subject, does not emerge as a strongly discriminating factor. Hypotheses on the likely evolution and outcomes of each type of alliance are derived from the taxonomy. Author Keywords: alliance; cooperation; interfirm collaboration; competition; globalization; taxonomy; configurations KeyWords Plus: JOINT VENTURES; COLLABORATION; COMPETITION; TECHNOLOGY; INDUSTRY