In recent years management scholars and practitioners have been interested in Research and Development (R&D) partnering, especially in high-tech industries. While the motivations of research partnership formation have been widely explored in literature, little attempt has been undertaken to examine the effects of research partnerships on R&D productivity and the implications for business models of the new ventures. In this paper we try to shed some light on the business models of the young ventures involved in R&D partnerships and their effect on R&D productivity. Our hypotheses are that experience in previous alliances, repeated partnerships and tight relationships have positive effects on R&D productivity while rigid governance structures and public R&D subsidies have negative effects on such productivity. We discuss how these aspects affect the business models of biotech firms. We test our hypotheses on a sample of 55 Italian DBFs (Dedicated Biotech Firms). Results support our hypotheses. Managerial implications and further issues for future research are discussed.