Originally posted on 3/12/2013
The 2013 ASAP Alliance Excellence Award winners were announced at the annual ASAP Alliance Excellence Awards Recognition Dinner at the Gaylord Palms Resort and Convention Center in Orlando, Fla., Wednesday, March 7, and collectively this year’s winners exemplify the alliance management community’s growing diversity. The honorees represent old and new ASAP members, big companies and small, organizations from multiple countries and continents, and operations that are truly global in scope.
Category: Alliance Program Excellence
Takeda Pharmaceuticals is the purveyor of this year’s top alliance practice. Its Global Alliance Management (GAM) team oversees 45 alliances that cover 49 drugs. Moreover, the company’s alliance operations have a global reach and scale, particularly after the integration of Nycomed, the Zurich-based pharmaceutical company it acquired in 2011.
GAM has been very active in selecting the right executives from the company’s senior leadership team for governance committees. The alliance practice provides extensive training to its team members, as well as employees outside of the alliance function that carry out critical alliance responsibilities. It also delivers skill development exercises throughout the life cycle of each alliance. Takeda’s online alliance management toolkit is available to all alliance management professionals and its content is bundled under three broad categories—Launch, Manage, and Transform. The company shares elements of this toolkit with its partners.
Takeda has recently received regulatory approval in the United States and subsequently launched the kidney anemia drug Omontys, and obtained EU approval for two products: 1) iron deficiency anemia drug Rienso and 2) Revestive, a treatment for short bowel syndrome. All of these drugs were products of Takeda collaborations.
Category: Individual Alliance Excellence
There are two winners in this award category. For best small or mid-sized alliance, Toronto-based exactEarth and the Norwegian company Kongsberg Satellite Services (KSAT) were honored for their partnership, which has produced a groundbreaking technology and service that enables electronic tracking of all oceangoing ships beyond port areas anywhere around the world. The former is a start-up that has deployed several low-Earth orbit satellites, and the latter provides ground stations in the arctic regions to optimize those satellites.
Getting this technology up and running required a tremendous amount of technical and operational resources. In addition, communications frequencies are regulated by different government entities in each region of the globe. To further complicate this initiative, such an operation requires an extraordinary degree of real-time cooperation and trust—teams must work together 24/7 to detect, isolate, and resolve problems that may arise. Today, the system tracks more than 85,000 ships and processes 4 million messages each day. Revenue growth has doubled each of the past three years and the partnership’s joint customer base includes companies from five continents.
Two-time Alliance Excellence Award winner SAS and its storage partner Teradata were bestowed with the long-established alliance award in this category. The two companies formed their alliance in 2007 to come up with solutions that enable joint customers to quickly analyze and mine reams of data for actionable cutting-edge insights into their businesses. The alliance has enjoyed strong support at the CEO level, and the two companies have adeptly aligned themselves across all major functional areas, including project management, R&D, product management, marketing, services, and technical support.
A deep technical engagement embodied the two organizations’ willingness to put skin in the game; Teradata manufactured a storage appliance solely for use with SAS software (a first for the company), while SAS enabled Teradata to load its software on this appliance during the manufacturing process—likewise, an unprecedented move in its history. The alliance has handled more than 400 customer engagements and netted more than 250 joint customer wins, to date.
Category: Innovative Alliance Best Practice
Schneider Electric took home the trophy in this category by tackling a challenge that is pervasive in all of business today: incorporating social media into its alliance management organization’s affairs. Today, Schneider Electric’s alliance management team oversees a social media machine that has generated more than 25,000 individual page views for its blog posts, 72 “InLinks” on LinkedIn, and 105 retweets on Twitter for its successes. Moreover, it has improved communication and increased collaboration across some of its key partnerships.
The social media infrastructure has been especially useful and effective for promoting major alliance announcements, particularly at major trade shows. The company chronicled the action from these events, then published follow-up posts and tweets immediately after the trade shows as well as months afterward to mirror follow-on press release schedules and coincide with relevant articles that appeared in major publications. For the on-site event activities, Schneider Electric hired a professional video crew to liven up the event coverage.
Category: Alliances for Corporate Social Responsibility
Schneider Electric’s BIPBOP program had an ambitious goal: train 100,000 unemployed people in developing nations to be electricians by the year 2014. As this effort was initially solely funded by the Schneider Electric Foundation, the company realized it needed to rethink its model when it had managed to train only 10,000 new electricians by the end of 2011. Schneider Electric searched within its partner base and outside of it to find like-minded partners that shared its strategic objectives of sustainability, in terms of both energy efficiency and the development of the economies of emerging nations.
The BIPBOP alliance team drew up a list of 88 prospective partners for its ecosystem and made formal alliance agreement offers to 11 of them. Ultimately, the BIPBOP alliance welcomed four new members: 1) Paris-based Rexel, 2) Art of Living, 3) Ambuja Cement Foundation, and 4) Jubilant Bhartia. Rexel was brought in to create two training labs in China to develop 300 new electricians, while the other three organizations—all of which are based in India—will be charged with creating 17 training centers in the country that will ultimately add 5,000 electricians to the job marketplace. Schneider Electric says these partners will add 1 million euros in value to the BIPBOP initiative.
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