Frequently Asked Questions

How does ThinkAlliance.com work?

What is an alliance?

What's the difference between an alliance and a joint venture?

When should I consider an alliance?

What is a virtual company?

What are some examples of alliances?

Who are the people behind ThinkAlliance.com?

How much does it cost to become a client?

Who can become a client of ThinkAlliance.com?

How can I learn more about alliances?

 


• HOW DOES THINKALLIANCE.COM WORK?

Simply put, ThinkAlliance.com helps create more profits for companies of all sizes. When ThinkAlliance.com hears from an individual or business, we match them up with the ThinkAlliance.com adviser best-suited to help.

After the client completes a brief business summary and wish list, the adviser prepares a simple proposal for the client’s approval. When the proposal is accepted, ThinkAlliance.com goes to work to create the alliance(s) which will produce the client’s desired outcome.

Clients of ThinkAlliance.com communicate directly with their adviser, bypassing the annoyances of phone tag, receptionist screening, and time-wasting voice-mail trees.

Contact ThinkAlliance.com...

 

• WHAT IS AN ALLIANCE?

Alliances can range from informal marketing agreements to joint ownership of a specific operation. Two types of alliances are joint ventures and strategic alliances. They share many of the same characteristics, and each is created through the cooperation of two or more companies with a common goal in mind.

The use of joint ventures and alliances is increasing as companies struggle to adapt to the rapidly changing conditions in the marketplace. Their popularity also results from the flexibility and innovative nature typical of joint ventures and alliances.

Joint ventures and strategic alliances are used for many of the same reasons that companies employ mergers, acquisitions, or divestitures. Like participants in mergers and acquisitions, companies participating in joint ventures and strategic alliances seek to achieve the scale of enterprise seen as necessary for success.

Participants in an alliance seek to gain economies of scale and knowledge, to increase geographic scope, diversify their asset base, share development costs, increase operating efficiencies, penetrate new markets, or take advantage of an established brand name or corporate reputation.

Joint ventures and strategic alliances have become increasingly popular as participants expand beyond their traditional boundaries and move into less familiar territory. Joint ventures and especially strategic alliances typically have the advantage of ease of withdrawal. They are not only less costly to undertake than a merger, but they are much less formal, and all parties retain a separate identity outside the agreement.

An unsuccessful alliance can be dissolved, usually without significant penalty to the participants, whereas an unsuccessful merger, acquisition, or even the quest for an acquisition may leave a company fatally weakened.

Contact ThinkAlliance.com...

 

• WHAT'S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN AN ALLIANCE AND A JOINT VENTURE?

For the most part, the terms "alliance" and "strategic alliance" are synonymous. At times, company press releases and trade-press articles use the terms "joint venture," "alliance," and "strategic alliance" interchangeably. However, joint ventures can be differentiated from alliances in general.

In joint ventures, the cooperating companies usually create a separate operation (or company) that carries out the daily operations of the project, and many develop new products and services or, in turn, acquire other entities on their own.

As a business arrangement formed to undertake a particular business transaction or project (rather than one intended to continue indefinitely), a joint venture aligns two or more companies in a separate entity, usually a corporation, LLC, General Partnership, or other formal relationship.

Joint venture participants spell out in detail the objectives of the venture, the contributions such as; capital, technical support, and services, management rights, how profit and/or losses are split. Joint venturers set up rules about restrictions, dispute mechanisms, and exit strategies.

In contrast to joint ventures, alliances between companies usually will not involve creating a separate company. A typical alliance involves the advertising and marketing of complimentary products and services of two or more companies.

A strategic alliance is a less formal, but very powerful business arrangement between two or more parties with complementary resources. Strategic alliances can be as simple as swapping customer lists (usually with endorsements), exchanging specific marketing strategies, or sharing under-utilized personnel.

To explain the basic difference between joint ventures and strategic alliances, here is a simplistic example:

Little Susie and Mary decide to make a lemonade stand and sell drinks for 50 cents to people in the busy neighboring park. Mary will build the stand and make the lemonade. Susie will man the stand and serve the drinks. After taking out expenses, they will split the profits.

Susie and Mary have a joint venture.

Their friend Albert is selling coupon books to raise money for his little league team. He is also looking for a way to make a few bucks for himself. Susie and Mary tell Albert that while he's asking people to buy his booklet, if he can get anybody from the park to come over and buy a lemonade that they will give him 10 cents each. If the customers say "Albert sent me," they will get a free upsize to a large (usually 75 cents).

Albert has a less-formal arrangement, doesn't share their expenses, and has no obligation other than his own motivation.

Albert has a strategic alliance with Susie and Mary.

For a list of real-life examples of strategic alliances and joint ventures, click here. Perhaps one of these examples will inspire an idea you can utilize in your own business.

Contact ThinkAlliance.com...

Back to Top

• WHEN SHOULD I CONSIDER AN ALLIANCE?

You should consider an alliance when there is a resource (money, talent, time, equipment, contacts, skills) in which you or your company is lacking or when the other company possesses a complementary skill which could be an asset to your firm.

An alliance can turn under-utilized resources into profit, create a new profit center, and help you enter untapped markets, quicker and at less cost than trying it alone. Alliances are a popular method of expanding business. Major corporations and mid-sized companies are getting together, and small companies can, too, on a less formal basis.

ThinkAlliance.com serves to bring businesses together and encourages joint venture and other cooperative arrangements.

Contact ThinkAlliance.com...

 

• WHAT IS A VIRTUAL COMPANY?

ThinkAlliance.com is a "virtual company" in the sense that there is no centralized location from which our advisers work. As a network of like-minded business strategists (advisers), ThinkAlliance.com utilizes the Internet and other technologies to communicate, brainstorm, and capitalize on a unique talent pool unrestricted by geographic constraints.

ThinkAlliance.com is a leading player in the burgeoning field of teleconsulting, where professional advisers communicate with clients via telephone, video conferencing, the World Wide Web, and other technologies. Teleconsulting eliminates the costly overhead of brick-and-mortar businesses, enabling us to pass the savings on to our clients.

Modern communications technology has allowed us to circumvent the traditional problems associated with working on 4 continents and 18 time zones. Because of this, we have access to facilities and personnel about which most companies would normally only dream. We can hire exactly the people we want from around the world without regard for relocating them physically in one place, and those who do come aboard are those who are best able to adapt to changing technologies and environments.

Although we do have office facilities in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, our activities, personnel, clients and projects are spread around the world. We have a very high degree of flexibility as a "virtual" company--flexibility that doesn’t come with being located in a single physical building in an office park.

Contact ThinkAlliance.com...


• WHO ARE THE PEOPLE BEHIND THINKALLIANCE.COM?

ThinkAlliance.com is an international affiliation of business strategists, consultants, marketers, and dealmakers, all dedicated to bringing people and their companies together with other like-minded business people for mutual gain.

The business relationships we create can take the form of joint ventures, cross-promotions, strategic alliances, partnerships, endorsements, brain trusts, marketing alliances, and just about any other scenario you could imagine. Many times, the alliance-creation fee is paid from proceeds of the new sales created by the alliance itself, so the cost to all parties is zero.

We are committed to developing what we call "all-win situations," where all the parties to the alliance (and especially their customers) walk away smiling. Most of the alliances require no major capital investment, but they do require an open and creative mindset.

Contact ThinkAlliance.com...

 

• HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO BECOME A CLIENT?

Informally speaking, it costs anywhere from "nothing at all" to "probably more than you can afford." Many times, especially for small businesses, ThinkAlliance.com forms alliances and simply acts as a participant in the new venture. In that capacity, we are often compensated per transaction. Since it is all "found money," there is no expense for any party.

Other times, we charge a fee for our services--always within the budget of our client and never more than a fraction of the value we create.

Contact ThinkAlliance.com...

 

• WHO CAN BECOME A CLIENT OF THINKALLIANCE.COM?

Any company, of any size, in any industry (online or not) interested in expanding their business, improving sales, broadening the scope of their vision, or exchanging ideas with like-minded people in the same or different industries. ThinkAlliance.com has worked with individual salespeople, start-up companies, and multi-national corporations.

We have created alliances ranging in value from $10,000 to more than $10,000,000. ThinkAlliance.com will seriously entertain taking on any client who is sincere in their desire to take their business to the next level of success. If a client is accepted, we will work with them to determine their needs and the best course of action to locate one or more alliance partners.

Contact ThinkAlliance.com...

 

• HOW DO I CONTACT THINKALLIANCE.COM?

If you would like to communicate personally with an adviser at ThinkAlliance.com, please contact us using our easy online form. We will be happy to answer all your questions, determine if there is a possibility of creating an alliance with your business, and discuss your various options.

Once initial contact is made, you will be able to communicate directly with your adviser via telephone and e-mail.

We are committed to communicating with our clients in a straight-forward manner, free of jargon and doublespeak. We believe that every client deserves a business that is stimulating, lucrative, and enjoyable.

Contact ThinkAlliance.com...

 

• HOW CAN I LEARN MORE ABOUT ALLIANCES?

The best way to learn is by doing. But if you want to learn all you can about alliances before getting involved with one, we suggest one of the following books:


Strategies of Co-operation by John Child and David Faulkner.
Strategic alliances are increasingly common, as many organizations look toward various partnering arrangements. This book is a clear and comprehensive survey by two experienced authors with extensive knowledge of alliances in Europe, Asia, and America. They present different disciplinary perspectives (economics, strategy, organization theory), and offer numerous examples from the corporate world...


Building Strategic Relationships : How to Extend Your Organization's Reach Through Partnerships, Alliances, and Joint Ventures by Juli Betwee, David Meuel, William H. Bergquist, David Memel.
This book shows how successful alliances are launched, developed, and concluded. The authors draw from more than 200 interviews and 75 case studies of varied partnerships to provide perspective, guidance, and detailed case examples that will help progressive partners achieve their goals in all phases of partnership. A thorough, well researched collection of case studies and best practices. Makes the case for why and how strategic, cross-boundary relationships are the new models for doing business in today's marketplace.

Back to Top

 

For credit repair solutions, see Consumer Information Bureau & consumerinformationbureau.com

©1997-2003 ThinkAlliance.com All Rights Reserved
info@ThinkAlliance.com
Home About Us FAQ Contact Us