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Business collaboration worldwide

Written by Andrew Clark on 13 June 2017

Work with tried-and-tested partners to develop your products or services.

Connect to our network

  • Thousands research, technology and business opportunities
  • Expert advisers supporting connectivity
  • Partnership database features thousands of companies
  • Match-making at conferences and trade fairs
  • Regular missions and brokerage events 

Brokering successful collaborative partnerships is one of our key services.


For the purposes of research, technology transfer, growth and scaling, business collaboration is essential. 


We’ve had plenty of success in supporting and strengthening post start-up businesses. You could be next to leverage our services and unlock the benefits.


Hands coming together


What we do


We have a database which pulls together available business partnership opportunities from across the globe. This is updated daily and puts thousands of international businesses, universities and researchers within easy reach. 


Register your interest in an opportunity and our advisers will connect if you’re what they’re looking for to develop fruitful business ventures and collaborative relationships. Through our brokerage service, interested organisations will also be able to contact you directly.


Our network


EEN advisers can connect you to commercial, technological and research partners and with manufacturers, distributors, co-developers and suppliers overseas. 


We will help you identify opportunities, promote your products or services, source or license new technologies and protect your intellectual property. 


Each of the partners we work with are tried and tested, with many businesses finding success by connecting with them. You could be next to unlock the benefits.


How to collaborate with companies


We offer a wide range of support and activities for the purpose of collaboration, including:


  • Advice and coaching (benefits, potential issues, types)
  • Internal capability mapping
  • Identifying where external capabilities are necessary
  • Supporting franchise creation 
  • Sector network engagement 


What outcomes can you expect?


EEN have had many success stories in helping businesses in this way. Typical outcomes of collaboration include:


  • Strong impact on a company’s growth
  • Stronger proposals for grant funding
  • National and international expansion


On an EEN South West organised Global Business Innovation Programme (GBIP) visit to South Korea, the Director of a graphene-based sensing technology company, Altered Carbon, formed a collaborative business relationship with Strategy Manager of the National Physical Laboratory (NPL), ultimately leading to great business opportunities. 


The two met on the programme and this led to a return to South Korea for Altered Carbon to secure a collaborative project with the country’s world-ranked science and technology institute - the National Nanofabrication Centre of the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST).


Altered Carbon and NPL are now exploring collaboration in 5 areas, including that with KAIST. 


Benefits of collaborative working


There’s a plethora of benefits of collaboration to be unlocked by finding the right business partner. 


Improving innovation


Business innovation is key for growth. Partners could bring on new technologies, for example, allowing you to find revolutionary solutions that drive you forwards.


Growing your network


Growing your network and connecting with like-minded businesses has immeasurable benefits.  From angel investors to innovative entrepreneurs, there’s a vast amount of people out there who can help you drive your company forwards.


Strengthening areas of limitation


Regardless of how many people are working at your business, most companies who grow beyond startup phase will lack expertise in certain areas.


Collaborating can help introduce new technologies, methods of production, or ways of increasing outcome while decreasing costs. 


Adopting new skills is essential to help you solidify your place in the market, ensuring you don’t stagnate.


Generates fresh ideas


A partner will have a different way of viewing things; bringing something new and fresh to the table.


Why should you consider expanding into new markets?


It’s vital to consider implementing a market entry strategy, here’s why:


Collaborative R&D


To expand into a new market you’ll need to undertake collaborative R&D to get your technology or product ready. In order to do this, a partner can help you test for the new markets. 


We recently helped an animal tracking technology business, Herdsy, with expansion into new markets. This involved gaining an insight into the customers needs and how to reach their target audience in the new countries. This came via a collaboration with partners in China who helped their international expansion.


“We had no budget to go to China, so I was given a travel grant. We also received £60,000 matched funding from our Local Enterprise Partnership to build our prototype. Now our single deal in China promises to make us the global leader in our field, in terms of animals tracked, in two years.”


Richard Hobson, Founder & CEO, Herdsy


Widen customer base


Some businesses wrongly assume international market expansion will result in alienating the existing customers they have. However, if implemented properly, this shouldn’t be the case. 


In fact, you should see significant growth in your customer base; engaging a wider and more diverse audience.


Gain access to talent


Accessing new talent can help you strengthen any areas of your business that might be lacking. International workforces could help you increase productivity and output by giving providing you with diverse skill sets and languages.


This can allow you to find new ways to appeal to the local market with your existing product. 


Stand out from your competitors


Your market expansion strategy can give you a competitive advantage in your sector. 


You can build strong brand awareness and find new ways to develop your business model.