According to a recent PwC study, 27 percent of CEOs are considering or are already working with a competitor in some type of partnership.

Here is just a smattering of some higher profile examples.

1. Toyota + Ford

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To fend off tech giants Apple and Google--which are trying to make inroads to the  auto industry--this year Toyota teamed with Ford to integrate Ford's apps platform into its cars.

2. Microsoft + Dell

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Even as their competition was heating up--Dell pushing into the cloud, Microsoft launching its own tablet--Dell announced last year that it would sell Microsoft's Surface Pro 3 tablet to corporate customers.

3. Lyft + General Motors

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After GM invested $500 million in the ride-sharing service, the two unveiled a car-rental program to recruit Lyft drivers whose own vehicles don't pass muster, which has been the startup's biggest challenge.

4. Princeton + Stanford + University of Pennsylvania + University of Michigan

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Any one of these universities could have launched edtech startup Coursera alone, but building it together helped attract VC interest while distributing the risk.