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52 Examples of Strategic Partnerships

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A strategic partnership is an agreement between two companies that is relevant to the strategy of one or both firms. These are based on agreements that often don't go so far as establishing an actual partnership entity such as a joint venture. The following are common types of strategic partnership.
Academic collaborations
Asset sharing
Brand partnerships
Channel partners
Co-development of products and technologies
Community partnerships
Customer partnerships such as customer referrals
Data sharing
Distribution partners
Ecommerce partners
Event partners
Facility sharing
Finance partners such as creditors
Franchise partners
Funding partnerships
Government partnerships
International distribution partners
Joint marketing
Joint ventures
Knowledge sharing
Licensing agreements
Market research partners
Marketing alliances
Marketing partners such as affiliates
Operational integration such as banks that settle trades
Outsourcing partners
Product bundling
Promotional partners such as influencers
Research consortium
Research partners
Reseller partnerships
Retail partnerships
Risk sharing
Sales partnerships
Service bundling
Service providers
Solution integration
Strategic alliances
Strategic investments in other firms
Supply chain partners
Talent exchange
Technology integration
Technology partners
Trade associations
Training partnerships
Value added reseller

Research & Development

Join programs of innovation and product development. For example, solar companies that invest in a development project for more durable solar cells that can be used as roads.


Design partnerships such as a small design firm that partners with a large established manufacturer on a line of shoe designs. This gives the small firm access to efficient manufacturing and extensive marketing capabilities. The large firm benefits from fresh designs from a growing firm that has demonstrated its ability to design for certain target markets.


Suppliers such as a strategic supply of a material that is in high demand such that shortages are likely.


Outsourcing non-core business activities in order to focus on areas of competitive advantage. For example, a real estate company that outsources its information technology functions.

Supply Chain

Supply chain partners such as an ecommerce company that develops partners with supermarkets and convenience stores to act as pickup points for packages.


Distribution agreements such as a retailer that agrees to sell your products in its stores.

Value Added Resellers

A partner that adds services or additional product features to your offerings before reselling them. For example, a partner that sells your software product as a service.


Promotional partners such as a beverage company that partners with a summer music festival to promote its brand.


Brand partnerships such as a cobranded product.


Funding a shared program or project. For example, a partnership of IT firms that funds a new internet backbone that benefits both companies.


A commercial entity that partners with a non-profit to improve communities or the environment. For example, a fast food restaurant that funds an ocean plastic clean up initiative.
Overview: Strategic Partnerships
An agreement between organizations that is relevant to strategy.
Related Concepts
Next: Business Strategy
More about strategic partnerships:
Business Development
Business Growth
Business Strategy
Growth Strategy
Partner Risk
Strategic Outcomes
Strategic Partners
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