The A-Team was established under a threat from Chinese companies as well as because of the declining demand for premium-priced bicycles In world markets. Under pressure, the cohesion of a group tends to be stronger. Thus Clans and Merriam Industry Co. Ltd (Merriam) decided to put aside their business competition and brought their suppliers together to develop a solution and to regain the reputation of Taiwan bicycle industry. Moreover, although these firms were competitors, the founder of Giant and the founder of Merriam were old friends and both led the bicycle industry in Taiwan. 2.
Is there some relevance that the firms were all Taiwanese firms The Corporate Synergy Development Center (CDC), a semi-government agency, was created to assist Taiwanese firms in establishing production networks. It was characterized as a system of production in firms that were simultaneously specialized in a particular task but flexible in serving a wide range of market demands. 3. What kind of activities/mechanisms contributed to the mutual learning among A-Team members Firstly, the coaching team, which composed from Giant, CDC and Toyota Motors, had both the expertise needed and legitimacy.
The team was helpful to Introduce TIPS and SIRS. Secondly, an Internal A-Team was formed by each member company to work with other members. It promoted mutual learning. Thirdly, in 2004, more learning and sharing activities were designed for co- development of innovative and high-value bicycles and parts. Thus those activities can teach most Taiwanese firms to learn how to work with others in developing new products. Fourthly, the e-platform was established for all members could work getter as well as the A-Team members and clients to exchanges Information and manage development projects.
Finally, A-Team members engaged In monthly visits by consultants from Toyota Motors, discussion sessions, visiting members with good performance in TIPS and presentation by each member every five months. These activities can increase the interaction between individuals in member firms. 4. Is cooperating with a direct competitor (such as between Merriam and Giant) a viable prospect for the A-Team In the long term The Initial success of the A-Team shows hat how companies working together can enhance their competitiveness to counter external threats.
The companies In the bicycle Industry in Taiwan know that there Is strong domestic and international demand for their high-end products. This is an implication for companies in other industries and these companies may potentially imitate the moves of the A-Team. 5. Is it okay if one partner gains more from the alliance than others That is okay. If the members gain more knowledge, skills and techniques form the alliance or others, they will be asked to contribute more own quenches and knowledge to others.