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A joint venture is a business agreement in which parties agree to develop, for a finite time, a new entity and new assets by contributing equity. They exercise control over the enterprise and consequently share revenues, expenses and assets. There are other types of companies such as JV limited by guarantee, joint ventures limited by guarantee with partners holding shares.

In European law, the term 'joint-venture' (or joint undertaking) is an elusive legal concept, better defined under the rules of company law. In France, the term 'joint venture' is variously translated as 'association d'entreprises', 'entreprise conjointe', 'coentreprise' and 'entreprise commune'. But generally, the term societe anonyme loosely covers all foreign collaborations. In Germany,'joint venture' is better represented as a 'combination of companies' (Konzern)[1]

On the other hand, when two or more persons come together to form a temporary partnership for the purpose of carrying out a particular project, such partnership can also be called a joint venture where the parties are "co-venturers".

The venture can be for one specific project only - when the JV is referred to more correctly as a consortium (as the building of the Channel Tunnel) - or a continuing business relationship. The consortium JV (also known as a cooperative agreement) is formed where one party seeks technological expertise or technical service arrangements, franchise and brand use agreements, management contracts, rental agreements, for ‘‘one-time’’ contracts. The JV is dissolved when that goal is reached.

Some major joint ventures include Dow Corning, MillerCoors, Sony Ericsson and Penske Truck Leasing.

A joint venture takes place when two parties come together to take on one project. In a joint venture, both parties are equally invested in the project in terms of money, time, and effort to build on the original concept. While joint ventures are generally small projects, major corporations also use this method in order to diversify. A joint venture can ensure the success of smaller projects for those that are just starting in the business world or for established corporations. Since the cost of starting new projects is generally high, a joint venture allows both parties to share the burden of the project, as well as the resulting profits.

A joint venture is not to be taken lightly. For a businessperson to embark on a joint venture, he or she needs to be committed and willing to work cooperatively with the other party involved. A person involved in a joint venture can no longer make all of the decisions for the business alone. For it to be truly a “joint venture,” there has to be 100% commitment from both sides.[2]

When determining whether or not to embark on a joint venture, it is important to ensure both parties are a match with the projected client base. In a joint venture, each party must compliment the other in business. Sometimes, a misunderstanding or a lack of communication can destroy a joint venture. Therefore, it is necessary for both parties to be capable of communicating what they are able to offer to the project and what their expectations are.

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