2011 Alliance Excellence Awards Winners Unveiled

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ASAP’s Annual Awards Highlight the Imaginative Ways Alliance Management Aids Companies in Reaching New Frontiers

"Our award winners exemplify how business collaboration helps companies tap new levels of creativity to accomplish something far greater than what could be attained solo," said Art Canter, president and CEO of ASAP.

The Association of Strategic Alliance Professionals (ASAP) today unveiled the winners of the 2011 Alliance Excellence Awards. IBM, SAP, Ipsen, Inspiration Pharmaceuticals and HP were among the winners in four categories: Alliance Program Excellence, Long-Established Alliance, Emerging Alliance and Innovative Alliance Practice. The Alliance Excellence Award winners restored highly-profitable partnerships, opened up new market segments, created social change and found new metrics to illuminate paths to alliance success.

“As 2010 unfolded, our economy began a slow recovery, and alliance executives found new ways to help companies propel themselves again after a tough previous year,” said Art Canter, president and CEO of ASAP. “Our award winners exemplify how business collaboration helps companies tap new levels of creativity to accomplish something far greater than what could be attained solo.”

IBM, SAP Recognized for Exemplary Performance

IBM and SAP have been partners for more than 35 years and they signed a strategic go to market alliance in 2001 which included SAP’s application software, with IBM’s consulting services, hardware and middleware. The two companies saw revenues increase significantly over the years with IBM and SAP growing their respective businesses in the market, by providing solutions together to joint clients.

In 2009, in EMEA, both companies decided to increase the level of engagement at country level and build a joint strategy to support long term client value creation. Both companies revamped their efforts to educate the other on how best to use the alliance' powerful portfolio to grow business.

With both companies refocusing on truly synergistic and effective initiatives, the alliance has now dramatically accelerated. In recognition of IBM and SAP’s joint success, ASAP has awarded the two companies its highly respected Long-Established Alliance award, recognizing the value of his importance alliance to their mutual clients.

Ipsen and Inspiration Biopharmaceuticals Team Up to Create Unique Hemophilia Partnership

This year’s Emerging Alliance award winners – Ipsen, a global biopharmaceutical company with headquarters near Paris (France), and Laguna Niguel, Calif.-based biotech Inspiration Biopharmaceuticals – entered into a partnership in 2010 to create a world-leading hemophilia franchise to broaden access to care and treat inhibitor complications (1). The two companies bring together a focused portfolio of treatments for hemophilia – constituting a group of serious, potentially life-threatening blood clotting disorders that affects more than 400,000 people worldwide, according to the World Federation of Hemophilia. Only about 25 percent of these individuals receive adequate treatment.

Ipsen brought proven sophisticated best practices in alliance management, as well as a promising hemophilia compound, OBI-1, to treat inhibitors. Inspiration had a broad R&D pipeline of hemophilia product candidates, including lead product, IB1001 (2), and manufacturing technology with the potential for high productivity. Ipsen created a cross-functional team with executives from multiple locations across Europe and the US, meeting monthly to discuss the alliance and program developments in conjunction with Inspiration.

In just one year, the alliance has progressed OBI-1 and IB1001 into pivotal clinical testing, one of the last steps before US and EU marketing approvals (BLA, MAA).

(1) In approximately one-third of individuals with hemophilia, the immune system develops antibodies that block the function of (inhibit) proteins found in standard hemophilia therapies, making treatment ineffective.
(2) A recombinant factor IX for the treatment and prevention of bleeding in individuals with hemophilia B.

IBM Global Entrepreneur Program Connects Big Blue to Startup Community

With an alliance program that contributes significant revenue to its bottom line, IBM has been ahead of the curve in partnering with Global 1,000 and midsized companies for decades. In 2010, the company extended the success of its Smarter Planet initiative, which aims to infuse intelligence into static objects that touch every element of society, through IBM’s Global Entrepreneur program and SmartCamps, which help drive innovation by cultivating and integrating Smarter Planet technologies from startups and small companies, a segment of the company’s partner program.

IBM launched its Global Entrepreneur program in 2010 to identify innovative startups with technologies that fit the numerous facets of its Smarter Planet strategy and help these selected emerging businesses through every phase of their development. IBM set up a series of SmartCamps around the globe that saw hundreds of startups apply. The ones that demonstrated the best technological fit, deep levels of innovation and greatest leadership potential in its management were granted exclusive access to extensive IBM resources and guidance. All companies accepted into the Global Entrepreneur program receive IBM’s software free of charge, admission to exclusive IBM mentoring events, ongoing access to IBM’s vast network of venture capitalists and industry partners and IBM technical support backing for expedient product development and quicker time-to-market.

Less than a year after IBM Global Entrepreneur’s inception, IBM is now engaged with nearly 1,000 new startups who, in turn, are in great position to not only beat the long odds for startup survival but to sustain long-term success thanks to an extraordinary commitment from one of the world’s leading companies. In addition, dozens more runners-up from SmartCamps were referred to IBM Innovation Centers and technology architects. Most importantly for IBM, Big Blue has now made significant inroads into a market segment that is essential to the advancement of its Smarter Planet strategy. The Global Entrepreneur program has earned IBM ASAP’s Alliance Program Excellence award.

HP Proves Reliable Partner Metrics Are RIPE for the Picking

In the Innovative Alliance Practice category, ASAP recognized the inroads made by HP in overcoming an age-old challenge for alliance executives – developing useful and accurate metrics for intangible contributions to overall company success.

HP Enterprise Services developed the RIPE diagnostic tool which measures Relationships, Innovation, Price and Engineering support of each partner relationship in the Agility Alliance Program. Rating each of the categories on a 0-3 scale, the resulting 12-point score is tallied each month and analyzed on a month-to-month basis. HP’s Agility Alliance managers and executives now have a concrete measure of both the quantitative and intangible elements of partnerships to identify short-term issues that need fixing, as well as long-term trends that reveal deeper strengths and weaknesses for each partnership.

In 2010, these insights helped HP Enterprise Services maximize their alliance engagements and deliver solid results from its Agility Alliance partners, including:

  •     A partner win rate increase, indicating the probability of winning a deal when partners were properly engaged, of more than 50% from 2009.
  •     Total Contract Value for partner engagements in North America exceeded estimates by 185%.
  •     A 40% spike over 2009 in partner coverage of strategic deals, indicating that effective partnering is key to winning large strategic deals.

Equally important, RIPE analyses indicated areas of improvement both in individual partnerships and the HP Enterprise Services Agility Alliance program as a whole to help determine partnering priorities for 2011.

“Our award winners are the latest illustration of a fact that has always been, and will continue to be true in the world of business: when companies practice the true discipline of alliance management, they see a much higher success rate in the performance of their partnerships and advance larger company goals significantly,” said Canter.

About ASAP
The Association for Strategic Alliance Professionals (ASAP) is the leading professional association dedicated to alliance formation and management. Founded in 1998, the organization provides a forum to exchange best practices and frameworks for cultivating the skills and toolsets needed to manage successful business partnerships and network with the world’s best alliance management professionals in several industries. Global sponsors include Cisco, Eli Lilly, IBM, Microsoft, Novartis, Procter & Gamble, USAA Insurance and Xerox. A complete list of sponsors is available at http://www.strategic-alliances.org.

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