Infrastructure Is Critical to Building Winning Alliances, IDC Says

FRAMINGHAM, MA – JUNE 12, 2001 – According to IDC, half of all alliances fail to live up to expectations. Alliance managers are responding with increased internal infrastructure to improve alliance management and potential for success. When it comes to alliances, IDC says strategy is good but execution is critical.


"The industry has moved beyond accepting alliances as a business strategy to focusing on how alliance agreements can be more effectively executed," said Nicole Gallant, analyst for IDC’s Software Partnering and Alliances program. "Getting alliances right and turning strategic-alliance savvy into profitability is key. Alliance implementation is a source of competitive advantage and a big leap forward in obtaining profitability. Solid strategic alliance management is rapidly becoming a core competency."

According to IDC, the companies that reap the rewards of successful and profitable alliances are those that understand management basics and provide the resources required to execute, manage, support, and measure the performance of their alliance partners. "Although individual alliance agreements may focus on marketing initiatives or technological development, the overall alliance strategy of any company is a business strategy," Gallant said. "Successful alliances are businesses that need to be managed – management strategy needs to be based on more than a wing, a prayer, and 18 holes. Infrastructure matters and process counts."

IDC’s survey of alliance managers reveals that joint business planning and committed resources are the most important factors in successful alliance management. "Successful alliances don’t just happen, they’re planned," Gallant added. Other best practices for successful alliances include consistent communication, clear alliance objective, status reviews, and senior executive accountability.

According to the survey, alliance managers are concerned about alliance profitability, insufficient resources, and the impact of market conditions on software vendors and their alliance partners.

Strategic Alliances 2001: Winners, Innovators, and the Next Generation (IDC #B24781) is IDC’s second annual in-depth report on best practices and emerging trends in strategic alliance management. This report discusses how much is being invested in alliances and in which areas and which partners will be the most sought after in 2001. It explains the factors that play a critical role in both the success and failure of an alliance agreement. It is an important learning tool for those looking to manage, measure, and implement their alliances more successfully.

To purchase this report, contact Cheryl Toffel at 1-800-343-4952, extension 4389, or at

About IDC

IDC delivers dependable, high-impact insights and advice on the future of ebusiness, the Internet, and technology to help organizations make sound business decisions. IDC forecasts worldwide markets and trends and analyzes business strategies, technologies, and vendors, using a combination of rigorous primary research and in-depth competitive analysis. IDC provides global research with local content through more than 700 analysts in 43 countries worldwide. IDC's customers comprise the world's leading IT suppliers, IT organizations, ebusiness companies, and the financial community. Additional information can be found at

IDC is a division of IDG, the world's leading IT media, research and exposition company.


# # #

All product and company names may be trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders.