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The Impact of Collaborative Agreement on Firms' Performances: The Case of the IT Industry in the 1990s

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In the information technology (IT) industry, which confronted a major transition phase during the 1990s, partnerships became a strategic component of the new 'divided technical leadership' that emerged from the industry's vertical disintegration. This paper attempts to evaluate the impact of 1676 partnerships on the financial performance (revenue and profit) of 14 large firms and 725 of their partners. On average, there is a positive impact of collaborative agreements on large incumbents and their partners' financial performance. These results vary according to the type, form and content of the agreement and according to the partner's field of activity. Incumbents get the most benefit from broad informal alliances while smaller and more hierarchical forms of partnerships (consortia, joint-ventures) do profit to their partners. For large incumbents, partnerships are more effective with partners from the services industry than with partners from the IT industry.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Solvay Business School, Brussels University (ULB), 2: Centre Emile Bernheim and DULBEA,

Publication date: March 1, 2007

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