I got into the area of international collaborations and joint venture field by accident. In the mid-1990’s, I was the head of the IT group at the Center for Innovative Technology (CIT). My role was to focus on helping technology companies in Virginia grow. CIT was also working with its partners Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP) and Fairfax County Economic Development Authority (FCEDA) on international trade and commerce including helping businesses in cross-border collaborations and joint ventures. I was interested in the topic and since I was originally from India, I was a natural fit for working with international IT companies planning to set up shop in the USA. I volunteered to work with VEDP and FCEDA on behalf of CIT to help Virginia businesses in international collaborations and also for establishing the US base for international companies.
Why Collaborate Internationally?
International business collaborations are ideal for teaming for achieving a common objective without permanency. They enable each party to maintain independence and identity and help build on each other’s strengths while reducing common weaknesses. International collaborations can be used to enter new territories and markets with a competitive advantage and to pursue and win larger opportunities not possible individually. Collaborations can lead to increased revenues, reduced cost, improved efficiencies or effectiveness by securing access to each other’s technologies, products, customers, and distribution network. Further, they allow each party to share risks, secure more resources, and access to skill sets. US organizations have a significant opportunity in the international collaborations and joint venture marketplace as their technology and know-how is well sought after by foreign partners.
"Unfortunately, most small and mid-size US and international organizations do not have an active and aggressive international collaboration program, thus missing out on potential revenues and profits."
Fragmented International Collaborations Marketplace:
I quickly learned that most organizations seeking international collaborations typically take one of the following routes. They search the internet, find a potential match and try to talk to them about partnering. This approach normally has a low probability of success as the party contacted may have no interest in partnering and may not entertain cold calls for international collaborations. The second option for companies interested in foreign collaborations is to embark on international trade missions. International trade missions are very costly, time-consuming and resource intensive. Unless a lot of pre-work has gone into initial research of partners and communications prior to the mission, the successful outcomes are low. Some companies take the international trade show route like the CES or CeBIT. This certainly is not the correct route as the companies demonstrating at such shows are normally focused on showcasing products and not engaging in collaboration discussions. Finally, some companies try to contact their country’s commercial attaches and trade ministers in foreign countries for help. However, without a dedicated embassy staff or tracking systems, most such opportunities do not yield much success.
International Collaborations Business Opportunities E-Directory?
Most small, medium and large organizations seek growth. Collaboration is an efficient and effective way to achieve it. However, finding the right collaboration partner around the world is complicated, time-consuming and costly. My goal was to make it simple and easy. So, I asked the companies who were seeking collaborations, what solution they would like. The answer was straightforward. Why not have a searchable, updated, international e-directory of organizations interested in seeking or offering international collaborations or joint ventures so locating interested parties becomes easy. Unfortunately, I could not locate a quality "international collaborations business opportunities directory" so I embarked on an initiative to create one!
ScaleUP USA Accelerator Initiative:
ScaleUP USA is my social enterprise initiative. The goal of this initiative is to help small and mid-size companies grow and build thriving communities of companies, jobs, and competitiveness. We have started compiling the world’s first INTERNATIONAL COLLABORATION OPPORTUNITIES E-DIRECTORY AND MARKETPLACE. Organizations’ of all sizes interested in seeking or offering international collaborations or joint ventures and who would like to find suitable suitors are encouraged to establish their organization’s business collaboration profile online today at https://www.scaleupusa.xyz/collaboration-directory through a point and click template for easy, accurate posting of their profile in collaboration areas like R&D, tech transfer, operations, manufacturing, marketing, distribution, finance, investment, consulting, joint ventures, acquisitions or mergers. We charge a small fee for processing profiles mainly to ensure that only committed and legitimate parties post their profile. Organizations of all types including R&D Centers, Tech Transfer Programs, Contract Manufacturing, Product and Services Companies and supporting Economic Development Agencies are encouraged to apply to this directory.
The company collaboration profiles registered in the e-directory will be indexed on major search engines for maximum global visibility and promoted on popular social media sites for maximum vitality in an open format e-directory. Company collaboration profiles listed on the e-directory remain visible for one year from the date of posting.
Sphere of Impact Partnership Program:
ScaleUP USA has also created a Sphere of Impact partnership program for like-minded organizations to participate in this compilation of INTERNATIONAL COLLABORATION OPPORTUNITIES E-DIRECTORY AND MARKETPLACE. Eligible organizations include -- local, state, national or international economic and community development agencies; country commerce departments, country embassy and trade or commercial attaches; trade associations, business councils, and business membership organizations; business financing institutions like banks and loan guarantee programs; utility companies, cooperative programs, and manufacturing partnerships; technology parks, software parks, science parks, and research parks and; business accelerators, business incubators, and co-working spaces. We encourage such organizations to register for the Sphere of Impact Partnership Program and facilitate the registration of their clients and members in the e-directory.
ScaleUP USA Virtual Trade Missions:
ScaleUP USA is also exploring setting up video conferencing meetings via HD encrypted video for conducting virtual trade and collaboration missions and broadcasting business opportunities collaboration focused workshops via Facebook Live. Interested parties can “like” ScaleUP USA’s parent company Facebook site at https://www.facebook.com/LaunchDream/ to participate in such future programs. Ultimately, the INTERNATIONAL COLLABORATION OPPORTUNITIES E-DIRECTORY and the coordinated programs accompanying it will allow all participants to work locally, grow globally and create win-win partnerships for revenues and profits and build a better world community!
About the Author:
Nitin Pradhan is the former award-winning CIO of the US Department of Transportation and a first term Obama Appointee; He is the current CEO of Launch Dream a business growth accelerator and Managing Partner of GOVonomy, an innovation as a service for governments and government contractors. He is also a Mentor at Mach 37, the nation’s top Cyber Accelerator,Z-Nation Labs, in Mumbai, India and on the External Advisory Board of Accenture. Business and Government leaders can connect with him on LinkedIn or follow him on Twitter.