Finding international cooperation partners - 10 tips for companies

The search for international cooperation partners opens up exciting growth opportunities, but also requires the right preparation.

Finding the right cooperation partner can be crucial to the success of your business. Cooperation with international partners in particular offers great opportunities, but also poses challenges. In this article, we give you 10 valuable tips on how to successfully search for international cooperation partners and build a trusting partnership.

Where can I find international cooperation partners?

1. Research the market and industry trends

In order to identify potential partners abroad, thorough research is essential. Analyse trends, developments and market potential in your sector. From this, you can identify promising cooperation opportunities and suitable partners. Use business databases, publications from industry associations and market studies. This will give you a good overview of the market situation and possible cooperation partners.

2. Visit international trade fairs and events

At trade fairs and congresses you will meet numerous companies from your sector. Use the opportunity to network and make initial business contacts. Exchange ideas with industry experts and sound out interest in cooperation. Interesting cooperation opportunities and contacts often arise at trade fairs.

3. use online cooperation exchanges

Special online platforms such as enable you to search for partners according to industry, location and interest in cooperation. Benefit from matchmaking and access to international company networks. Use clever filters to find suitable partners who share your cooperation interests.

4. contact institutions

Chambers of commerce, foreign trade centres and business development agencies support companies in establishing contacts abroad. They have good market knowledge and helpful contacts. Use this service to find cooperation partners in promising markets.

5. Integrate existing contacts

Also approach existing foreign business partners about potential cooperation opportunities. This is a good way to acquire interesting new partners. Use your network of contacts to get recommendations for cooperation.

6. Use social networks

Business networks such as XING and LinkedIn are an excellent way to search for industry players and decision-makers. Contact interesting profiles and explore opportunities for collaboration.

7. Attend conferences and trade delegations

Informative events with participants from many countries are a good way to make new contacts. Trade delegation trips are also helpful. Find out about relevant events and use them specifically to initiate international cooperation.

8. get involved in trade associations

Membership in international trade associations opens up contact opportunities with many companies. Here you can find cooperation partners with similar interests.

9. make use of consulting services

Specialised management consultants provide targeted support in the search for foreign cooperation partners. Their expertise and network contacts make the search for partners much easier.

10. Find out about funding programmes

Various government agencies offer support and funding for international cooperation. These programmes can support your activities to initiate cooperation.

How do I build a successful cooperation?

Proper preparation and communication are crucial for a trusting partnership:

- Clarify goals, expectations and conditions.
- Conclude a cooperation agreement
- Invest in personal exchange
- Be flexible and solution-oriented
- Take cultural differences into account
- Design the cooperation for the long term

Challenges in the search for international cooperation partners

The search for suitable cooperation partners abroad poses some challenges. Cultural differences as well as language barriers can make communication difficult. In addition, business practices and habits often differ from country to country. Without the necessary intercultural competence, it is not possible to build trusting business relationships.

Especially in developing countries, there is often a lack of transparency and market knowledge. Without prior experience in the region, it is difficult to find suitable partners. This is where service providers like offer support with their expert knowledge. Advice and contacts open up the potential for successful cooperation even in difficult markets.

Finding cooperation partners on

The matchmaking platform is a German development cooperation project that focuses on working with various partners to win private-sector companies for participation in development cooperation projects. At the same time, provides various market information for companies.

The Dutch start-up Nutnose, for example, was able to find a promising new partner in the Dominican Republic through Through the platform, founder Lodewijk Portielje became aware of a cooperation opportunity with a local macadamia nut farm. The first contact was followed by a personal visit to the potential partner in the Dominican Republic. Despite the great distance, the companies were thus able to get to know each other and build trust. This was the basis for establishing an international cooperation.

For the start-up, this opens up a new source of supply for macadamia nuts. At the same time, the local smallholders benefit from the transfer of know-how and better sales opportunities. A classic win-win situation for both partners.

Learn more about here and find similar requests and offers from potential cooperation partners in developing and emerging countries.

Conclusion: Successful cooperation with the right preparation

The search for international cooperation partners opens up exciting growth opportunities, but also requires the right preparation. Careful research, the use of different channels and the establishment of trusting relationships are crucial.

If you follow the tips presented here, you will increase your chances of success in your search for partners. It will also make it easier to overcome potential challenges.

With the right cooperation partner, you can open up new markets, drive innovation and develop your business. So the effort of finding a partner pays off. Try it out too!

Toast content has launched a special call supporting companies in Ukraine and Moldova, as well as civil society organisations in Germany. Find out more on the special pages.