This paper aims to address the impact of strategic alliances in the formation of the intangible assets of firms, namely their intellectual capital.
Taxonomies are conceptualised and developed for both a firm's intellectual capital and its strategic alliances. T‐student tests and hierarchical cluster analysis are then applied to scrutinise the data relating to companies in the Brazilian transformation industry (firms that transform raw materials into intermediary and final goods) involved in alliances over the course of a ten‐year period (1996‐2005) in an explanatory‐exploratory manner.
The paper finds that strategic alliances of different types have a positive impact on the intellectual capital of the organisations involved in them.
The acuity of the executives' perception regarding the variation of the intangibles, as a direct consequence of the formation of alliances, is a limitation. Furthermore, the categorisation of the types of alliance and the benefits obtained that this research sought are generic classifications that do not reflect in detail the aspects involved in each cooperative effort and their respective results.
Two propositions are put forward to be tested further, namely that innovation alliances have a greater influence on a company's intellectual capital generation than production or marketing alliances, and that the more focussed the strategic alliance formed is the greater the increase in the intellectual capital of the enterprise involved.
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