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The Importance of Keeping a Steady Hand on the Wheel and Stepping up the Pace When Managing Acquired Alliances

Posted By Cynthia B. Hanson, Wednesday, August 31, 2016
Updated: Saturday, August 27, 2016

“How does the alliance manager’s responsibilities change when a company and its alliances are acquired?” That was the key question participants plumbed in the fast-paced session “Navigating the Speed Bumps and Driving Decisions: A Roadmap for Integrating Acquired Alliances” by Katherine Kendrick, CA-AM, director of alliance management at Elanco, Eli Lilly and Company. The session was part of the programming at the 2016 ASAP Global Alliance Summit, “Partnering Everywhere: Expert Leadership for the Eco­system,” held at the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center, National Harbor, Maryland in the March. Kendrick also reprised her presentation for her April 14 ASAP Netcast webinar.


“Each alliance you acquire travels at different speeds,” Kendrick emphasized early on, adding that speed bumps are inevitable and likely will require quick moves with a firm hand on the wheel. When companies are purchased, the alliance manager needs to very specifically address a range of new partnering challenges, including:


·         Questionable alliance health status

·         Contract obligations not met by the acquired company

·         Lagging development or progress

·         Misaligned expectations

·         Disparity of information

·         Competitive challenges

·         Demotivation

·         CRO/CMO assignability of contracts


Central to a smooth transition is ordering the process of investigation, inquiry, and engagement with the main stakeholders, said Kendrick, who has considerable alliance management experience and more than 15 years of pharmaceutical experience with an emerging market expertise. After working to ensure the delivery of diabetes pharmaceutical and device development partnerships and commercial relationships, she assumed a leadership role in animal health at Elanco in 2015 as director of alliance management for research and development managing the strategic alliance portfolio of external innovation and mergers and acquisitions.


The process involves orchestrating clear communication between partners to build alliances teams, establish governance, and drive value; implementing divestiture and termination decisions that are respectful of the partners and individuals; addressing integration challenges that can cause blips in reporting and cash flow, she explained while swiftly flipping through her deck.


One way to coordinate that kind of complexity is to think of yourself as a smartphone app, she advised. Be an efficient technological program capable of:

·         Simplicity of interface with your senior leadership

·         Single point of contact for multiple aspects of relationships

·         Provision of integrated solutions

·         Ability to managing multiple tasks


Keep in mind, however, that after studying the new map that comes with your acquired alliance, you may conclude that it’s better to terminate, renegotiate, or sublicense.


ASAP organizes monthly webinars that are free for ASAP members, but available to non-members for a fee. Click here more information on ASAP webinars like Kendrick’s, or just register for ASAP’s September webinar that will discuss ‘Executing in the Field: The Key to a Sustainable’.


For three days of more insightful presentations on topics of critical interest to partnering professionals in life sciences and healthcare, don’t miss the 2016 ASAP BioPharma Conference.

Tags:  alliance health status  alliance managers  ASAP netcast webinars  Elanco  governance  Katherine Kendrick  partnerships  R&D  renegotiate  senior leadership  stakeholders  sublicense  sustainable  terminate 

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