4.2 Make your joint venture relationship work


A clear agreement is an essential part of building a good relationship. Consider these ideas:

  • Get your relationship off to a good start. For example, you might include a project that you know will be a success so that the team working on the joint venture can start well, even if you could have completed it on your own.
  • Communication is a key part of building the relationship. It’s usually a good idea to arrange regular, face-to-face meetings for all the key people involved in the joint venture. For ideas on ways to improve communication, see our guide on how to inform and consult your employees.
  • Sharing information openly, particularly on financial matters, also helps avoid partners becoming suspicious of each other. The more trust there is, the better the chances that your relationship will work.
  • It’s essential that everyone knows what you are trying to achieve and works towards the same goals. Establishing clear performance indicators lets you measure performance and can give you early warning of potential problems.
  • At the same time, you should aim for a flexible relationship. Regularly review how you could improve the way things work and whether you should change your objectives.
  • Even in the best relationship, you’ll almost certainly have problems from time to time. Approach any disagreement positively, looking for ‘win-win’ solutions rather than trying to score points off each other. Your original joint venture agreement should set out agreed dispute resolution procedures in case you are unable to resolve your differences yourselves.
  • To see an example of collaboration efforts in joint venture, see the case:

  • Addaction and Action for Change
  • Here are some examples of joint ventures:

  • INTO University Partnerships specialises in creating JVs with British universities
  • AutoAlliance International (Ford + Mazda)
  • Infineum (ExxonMobil + Shell)
  • Brewers Retail Inc. (Inbev, Molson Coors + Sapporo Breweries)
  • Bank DnB NORD (DnB NOR + NORD/LB)
  • Equilon (Texaco + Shell)
  • Strategic Alliance (Northwest Airlines + KLM)
  • LG.Philips Components (LG + Philips)
  • NUMMI (General Motors + Toyota)
  • Penske Truck Leasing (GE + Penske)
  • Sony Ericsson (Sony + Ericsson)
  • TNK-BP (BP + TNK (Tyumen Oil Co.))
  • Verizon Wireless (Verizon Communications + Vodafone)
  • CW Television Network (CBS Corporation + Warner Bros.)
  • The Baseball Network (ABC, NBC, + Major League Baseball)
  • The Prime Time Entertainment Network from the Prime Time Consortium (Warner Bros. + the Chris-Craft group of independent stations.)
  • The XFL (NBC + World Wrestling Entertainment)
  • The Nokia Siemens Networks (Nokia + Siemens AG)
  • Fujitsu Siemens Computers (Fujitsu + Siemens AG)
  • The Balfour Beatty Skanska, construction contractors (Balfour Beatty + Skanska)
  • Shell-Mex and BP (Royal Dutch Shell + British Petroleum, 1931-1975)
  • United Launch Alliance (ULA) (Boeing + Lockheed Martin).
  • Sony BMG Music Entertainment (Sony Music Entertainment [part of Sony] + Bertelsmann Music Group [part of Bertelsmann])
  • MSNBC (Microsoft + NBC Universal)
  • Hulu (NBC Universal + News Corp + ABC, Inc.)
  • GlobalFoundries (AMD + Advanced Technology Investment Co. (ATIC))
  • Borusan Enerji (Borusan Holding + EnBW AG)
  • TriStar Pictures (Columbia Pictures, HBO, + CBS)
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