Myanmar’s emergence continues to captivate regional and multinational business leaders, as they explore how to become a part of the country’s growth story.
Joint ventures and strategic alliances are common vehicles for such investments, as they balance the opportunity to access the growth with the uncertainties of entering a new territory. But such partnerships also come with their own unique challenges, not least of which is ensuring that strategic and operational objectives of both partners are aligned.
Like any relationship, a successful business partnership relies on a fair exchange of benefits and obligations. Local businesses should demand more than just cash investment from foreign partners, as multinationals can bring know how, expertise and best practices to help Myanmar’s development. Foreign investors in turn rely on the local market knowledge and networks of their partner.
Executing the JV in Myanmar can be challenging due to limitations in accounting, financial and legal information. Local groups often have complex structures and commercial arrangements.
This can make it difficult for a foreign investor to evaluate the investment with confidence, leading to frustrating and drawn-out due diligence processes.Improving accounting processes and internal controls will make management information more reliable.
Businesses considering a JV or alliance can benefit by using advisers who understand both the investment expectations of global corporations, and how to overcome the practical challenges of executing transactions in Myanmar.