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From Apple to Google: The Power of Successful Business Partnerships

Successful Business Partnerships

The world of entrepreneurship and business is a vast arena, and success can be elusive. Statistics show that up to 90% of startups fail, highlighting the need for solid partnerships in the business world.

Successful business partnerships have been the backbone of many successful businesses, as evidenced by the following partnerships. Procter & Gamble

The story of Procter & Gamble (P&G) dates back to the mid-19th century when William Procter and James Gamble, two brothers-in-law, joined forces to create a successful candle-making business.

The P&G partnership gained popularity, and today, it remains one of the largest companies in the world. Their success was built on the foundation of constant innovation and a commitment to quality products.

Wells Fargo

Henry Wells and William Fargo founded their company initially intending to provide express and banking services to emerging markets. They later merged with American Express in 1850.

Their business model has proven a stable one because the company has survived over the years, consistently delivering value to its customers and shareholders.

Standard Oil

John D Rockefeller and Henry Flagler established

Standard Oil in 1870. The duo became successful thanks to their ability to dominate the oil production industry, making them some of the wealthiest men in history.

Standard Oil’s success was due to their commitment to quality control, optimization, and cost-cutting in their operations.

Wright Brothers

The story of two brothers, Orville and Wilbur Wright, is one of the most celebrated and discussed stories in aviation history. From their inventions to their final accomplishment in Kitty Hawk, the

Wright Brothers’ partnership was fueled by their exceptional engineering prowess and shared commitment to their goals.


In 1939, Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard established

Hewlett-Packard. The tale of their success can be attributed to their complementary skill sets and mutual respect.

Their partnering resulted in numerous technological advancements in the computer industry and put them at the forefront of technological innovation. Ben & Jerry’s

Arguably the most delicious partnership, Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield, established Ben & Jerry’s in 1978.

This ice cream partnership was successful due to their commitment to philanthropic causes, quality ice cream, and their unique approach to marketing.


In the 1970s, Bill Gates and Paul Allen established a software company, later named

Microsoft. Gates and Allen’s partnership is an excellent example of a visionary founder and second-in-command partnership that paid off.

Their foresight and passionate commitment to licensing software to personal computer manufacturers set in motion the personal computing revolution.

Berkshire Hathaway

Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger’s Partnership has seen its fortunes grow from a meager beginning. The two investors created

Berkshire Hathaway in 1965, and in the early days, it was a textile manufacturer.

Today, the company’s shares trade at one of the highest prices ever recorded in the stock market. Their success is due to their shared experiences, unshakable principles, and strategic investment style.

Apple Inc. Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak established Apple Inc., which has grown into one of the most profitable tech companies globally.

The success of the partnership can be attributed to their collective innovative ideas and entrepreneurial skills. Jobs and Wozniak’s complementary skills brought various products and service offerings that changed the computing industry’s face.


Larry Page and Sergey Brin, both Ph.D. Students at Stanford, established

Google on the principles of efficient searching on the internet. Their vision to create a tool to help people quickly find information no matter where they are in the world became a reality.


Google is the world’s largest search engine and has become more than ‘just’ a search engine.


Pierre Omidyar and Jeffrey Skoll created

eBay to offer an alternative option where people could buy and auction off items online. The

eBay partnership was a success because of the unique platform they created and their ability to quickly respond to customer feedback, thus keeping them ahead of their competition.


Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg are the faces behind the popular social networking site,

Facebook. Zuckerberg and Sandberg’s partnership resulted in a platform that connects people worldwide.

Facebook’s success rests on their innovative approach to social networking, which in return has brought their revenues to new heights.

Rent The Runway

Jennifer Hyman and Jennifer Fleiss established

Rent The Runway to provide an affordable alternative to fashion-loving women to discover and rent designer dresses, jewelry, and accessories. Their business model has been successful due to their subscription-based service, which has gained popularity for budget-conscious and fashion-conscious Millennials.


Katia Beauchamp and Hayley Barna’s

Birchbox offers customers a personalized approach to purchasing beauty products. Beauchamp and Barna’s business model is unique because they use a data-driven approach to capturing customer preferences, which has fueled their success, making them one of the most popular beauty subscription services today.

Business Success and Partnership Characteristics

Why do some business partnerships succeed, and others fail? Every successful partnership shares specific characteristics that contribute to their success.

These characteristics include:

High Business Failure Rates

The high number of businesses that fail can be attributed to many factors, including inadequate capitalization, insufficient market research, and a lack of a solid business model. Successful business partnerships must combine innovative ideas with a realistic but flexible business plan.

Putting Company Welfare Above Personal Gain

Partnerships that put the company’s welfare above personal gain are more likely to succeed. This was the case with Procter & Gamble, where William Procter and James Gamble decided to share resources to create candles of the highest quality.

Each partner recognized their strengths and weaknesses and utilized them to create a successful venture.

Complementary Skill Sets

Successful partnerships require two individuals with complementary skill sets. This is seen in the partnership between

Hewlett-Packard’s Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard, who possessed unique skills in audio oscillator technology.

Together, they developed a company pioneering in what would become the Silicon Valley.

Strong Work Ethic

Strong work ethic is one of the hallmarks of successful partnerships. This can be seen in

Wells Fargo, who were tireless in their efforts to expand their business and introduce new products and services to new and emerging markets.

Good Communication

Effective communication is key to any successful partnership. Orville and Wilbur Wright’s partnership was built upon constant communication, resulting in their breakthrough in powered flight in 1903.

Giving Back

Partnerships that prioritize philanthropy have a greater chance of success, such as Ben & Jerry’s Foundation, which has donated millions to charitable causes.

Visionary Founder and Second-in-Command Partnership

Successful partnerships have a visionary founder and a second-in-command who can steer the partnership in the right direction. Like in

Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg’s partnership, Zuckerberg is a perfect example of a far-sighted founder, while Sandberg has exceptional leadership and managerial skills.

Shared Experiences

Shared experiences and common backgrounds allow partners to connect and synchronize on common goals. This is evident in

Berkshire Hathaway, whose founder Warren Buffett shares a similar background with his partner Charlie Munger.

This connection has allowed the two to be on the same page with their investment principles.

Innovative Ideas

Successful partnerships have a shared vision and passion for developing groundbreaking solutions. Apple’s Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak’s partnership brought innovative computing products and services that revolutionized the computer industry.


Successful business partnerships are not a guarantee, but by combining complementary skills, effective communication, and a common goal, success can be attainable. The partnerships outlined in this article have proven that, with the right mindset, business loyalty, and effective planning, it is possible to achieve great success in business.

In conclusion, successful business partnerships are a crucial factor in entrepreneurial success. Characteristics such as complementary skill sets, strong work ethic, effective communication, shared experiences, and a shared vision for innovation and philanthropy contribute to successful partnerships.

The examples of successful partnerships mentioned in this article serve as role models for budding entrepreneurs seeking to establish their ventures. By prioritizing the company’s welfare above personal gain, having a clear business plan, and building trustworthy and professional relationships with partners, entrepreneurs can create and sustain successful business partnerships.

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