This thesis investigates negotiation processes during strategic alliance formations between venture capital firms and start-up companies by empirically assessing previous literature on negotiation theory and further developing the understanding of fairness theory. The lack of empirical evidence surrounding alliances between venture capital firms and start-up companies is the basis for this research. Cross-sectional data have been obtained from seven different successful cases of short-term investments in the IT industry to further this endeavor. The roles of distributive, procedural, interpersonal and informational fairness in negotiations of strategic alliance formation are analyzed based on interview data. The results indicate that the higher the venture capitalists perceive fairness, the more likely the strategic alliance formations will be successful.
Keywords: Strategic alliances, Alliance formation, Negotiation theory, Fairness theory