The benchmarking approach analyses the sources of competitiveness in the industry, comparing performance and best practice as well as organisational factors. The objective is to identify the underlying operating techniques and leadership skills that lay the foundation for success. By building up a solid base of facts, benchmarking develops knowledge that can lead to the formulation of action programs. The methodology employed compares each benchmarking partner’s position with that of its competitors for different elements of the value chain in a number of areas (Marketing, Sales, R&D, Production etc…). It then aims at developing an understanding of the reasons for the differences observed.