How strategic partnerships can level up your business – Retailing Africa


by Jonathan Hurvitz. It’s no exaggeration to say that the world has changed dramatically in just a few short years. And, just as with every other aspect of life, the way in which businesses operate and the environments they operate in, have changed just as much.

Essentially, the traditional means of doing business are no longer effective and there is simply no returning to the “old normal”. If businesses want to remain relevant, they need to redefine their operations, their value propositions, and the industries they operate in. To achieve this effectively, organisations must look at forming meaningful partnerships with complementary allies that will allow them to create new opportunities, by leveraging their partners’ knowledge, and expertise and deploying them in conjunction with their own.

Furthermore, forming strategic partnerships with other like-minded businesses is a secret ingredient that can have tremendous benefits in today’s tough economic climate. When faced with so many challenges, collaborating and building partnerships can help all parties address any problems as effectively as possible, and create innovative new products and services, helping them scale up and grow their business.

Staying competitive

The rapid acceleration of digital transformation, spurred on by the COVID-19 pandemic, has led to the increased adoption of digital technologies like Artificial Intelligence (AI) and cloud computing which is completely transforming the way that businesses make decisions;  with data-driven insights informing business strategy, product development, and customer experience.

This has led to an increasingly competitive business landscape, calling on organisations to innovate on all levels to differentiate themselves from other businesses doing the same thing. Collaborating with the right partner can help organisations create or access fresh opportunities and build new capabilities that enable them to keep pace with the transforming business environment.

Creating value for customers

The increased adoption of technology has also had an impact on customer expectations, as customers now demand more convenience, transparency, and a seamless customer experience.

These shifting consumer wants and needs are exactly why value creation should be a dynamic and evolving part of any business strategy. Businesses need to be constantly engaging with the question of how to continue to add value for customers; and by forming mutually beneficial partnerships with brands and suppliers they will be able to create consistent and relevant value.

In our business, we’ve developed strong partnerships with key brands to offer extra value to our customers. However, it’s important to note that when building these partnerships, businesses need to ensure that it is designed in such a way that the experience remains seamless for the customer,  and that all partners involved benefit equally, whether in terms of brand exposure or sales.

How to identify/find the right partners

As you can see, partnerships have a key role in helping businesses create value, leveraging new opportunities; and meeting changing customer needs by bringing in resources, skills, or experience that can help to plug any gaps or blind spots a business may have. But it can be a challenge to find the right partner as a successful partnership can only be achieved through trust, communication, and flexibility. As such, it’s important to do your due diligence when selecting a partner to collaborate with. This means ensuring that they have experience and credibility in the industry within which they operate; are financially sound with good financial management; have skills and strengths that will be complementary to your business; and most importantly, share the same values and can work together towards the same goals.

Partnerships can also add some complexity into any business, so it is essential that each party is clear on what is expected of them within the collaboration, what role they should play, and the contributions they are required to make to ensure its success.

Convenience has always been central to our offering, as the success of subscription-based businesses relies heavily on ensuring that products – in our case, appliances, consumer electronics, and furniture – are easily accessible in a way that offers customers the flexibility and affordability they need in today’s economic climate. Partnerships are key to helping us meet these customer needs and deliver the value and experiences they want most. That’s why we strongly believe that the right partnership will serve as the foundation of the development, growth, and success of any business looking to remain relevant in a continually changing world.

 

Main image credit: Pixabay.com.

 

 

Jonathan Hurvitz is the Group CEO of online retailer Teljoy and a registered Chartered Accountant in South Africa.

 

 

 

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