Partnerships – specifically the supplier/customer relationships much trumpeted in the last couple of decades, in all the best mission statements and business tomes sold in most airport bookshops – are nothing new. But there is certainly an increase in a new type of partnership – where suppliers get together to share the development and or the marketing of a product or service.
Take for example the recent announcement between transparent carton producers Scatolificio Cristina in Italy and PPS of the UK or the joint ventures of Stora Enso with Xeikon and Xaar with Invint (see News section). Here the partners will clearly benefit from shared innovation development costs and, certainly in the second and third examples the partnership will bring together the different capabilities of the companies in an almost perfect fit. And naturally it means there are more people on the ground to champion and promote the product.
Increasingly we are also seeing and indeed experiencing ourselves partnerships in the exhibition business. Last year we were the official converting magazine partners of drupa. This year we partner Flexo at the NEC this month. We have also enjoyed media partner status for next month’s CMM in Chicago. In addition we partner the International Converting Show (ICE 2005) this autumn, the show which has interestingly recently announced another significant partnership – with CMM. It will promote CMM in Europe and vice versa (see CMM feature). On the label converting front our media partnership is with Label Expo Europe.
Of course these relationships are symbiotic, but nevertheless it’s flattering for the magazine and its team of staff to be picked as media partner by these important shows.
Here’s to successful partnerships!