In their struggle to adapt successfully to the rapidly changing environment, many firms increasingly rely on strategic alliances as an expedient to overcome resource limitations, crack new markets, share costs or to provide platforms to remain strategically flexible. Strategic alliances (hereafter referred to as ‘alliances’) are defined as temporary cooperative agreements in which two or more firms share reciprocal inputs to realize improved competitive positions for the partners involved, while maintaining their own corporate identities. Both the number of newly established strategic alliances per year (Hergert and Morris, 1988; Narula and Hagedoorn, 1999) and the percentage of revenues that stem from strategic alliances (Harbison and Pekar, 1998b; Margulis and Pekar, 2001) have increased significantly in recent years. However, scholars and practitioners alike have pointed at the poor track record of alliances that over time continue to report high failure rates, ranging from 40 to 60 per cent (see for an overview Duysters et al., 1999a).
KeywordsStrategic Alliance Alliance Experience Alliance Activity Alliance Performance Central Research Question
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