The effect of strategic business partnerships between Equity Bank Ltd and its partners on marketing decisions
This study was conducted with the objective of determining how strategic partnerships influence marketing decisions by Equity Bank and its partners. It also set out to establish the nature of partnerships formed between Equity Bank and its main partners as at December 2010. To achieve the objectives, a case study was carried out where primary data was collected from five respondents with the aid of an interview guide. The primary data collected through the personally administered structured guide was thereafter analyzed. The analysis was carried out through content analysis. The findings of the data led to some key findings that Equity Bank and its partners have engaged in many partnerships and that indeed strategic partnerships do have an effect on marketing decisions. The main reasons for entering into partnerships were to increase customer base and to increase value for customers by giving or granting access to more products and services that the individual firms had no competencies in. The main nature of alliances formed was strategic equity alliances. In this arrangement no firm loses its identity to the other because complete integration is not a feature in equity alliances. The study concluded that strategic alliances influence most if not all of marketing decisions a firm makes. Firms that engage in strategic partnerships registered increased growth in customer base as well as having more satisfied customers. In addition the firms realized increased value for customers, increased brand reputation as well as achieved increased innovation of new products and services. A few challenges such as poor handling of customer care queries, system failures, fraud, discontentment by partners were encountered that caused firms to draw beneficial lessons too for future partnership agreements. The study thus concluded that strategic v partnerships should be used more aggressively as a strategy in the increased competitive business scene. Areas of further research identified included recommendations for research studies to be carried out on Agency Banking in commercial banks.