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Price Versus Production Postponement: Capacity and Competition

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Author Info

  • Jan A. Van Mieghem

    (Kellogg Graduate School of Management, Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois 60208)

  • Maqbool Dada

    (Krannert Graduate School of Management, Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana 47907)

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    Abstract

    This article presents a comparative analysis of possible postponement strategies in a two-stage decision model where firms make three decisions: capacity investment, production (inventory) quantity, and price. Typically, investments are made while the demand curve is uncertain. The strategies differ in the timing of the operational decisions relative to the realization of uncertainty. We show how competition, uncertainty, and the timing of operational decisions influence the strategic investment decision of the firm and its value. In contrast to production postponement, price postponement makes the investment and production (inventory) decisions relatively insensitive to uncertainty. This suggests that managers can make optimal capacity decisions by deterministic reasoning if they have some price flexibility. Under price postponement, additional postponement of production has relatively small incremental value. Therefore, it may be worthwhile to consider flexible ex-post pricing before production postponement reengineering. While more postponement increases firm value, it is counterintuitive that this also makes the optimal capacity decision more sensitive to uncertainty. We highlight the different impact of more timely information, which leads to higher investment and inventories, and of reduced demand uncertainty, which decreases investment and inventories. Our analysis suggests appropriateness conditions for simple make-to-stock and make-to-order strategies. We also present technical sufficiency and uniqueness conditions. Under price postponement, these results extend to oligopolistic and perfect competition for which pure equilibria are derived. Interestingly, the relative value of operational postponement techniques seems to increase as the industry becomes more competitive.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by INFORMS in its journal Management Science.

    Volume (Year): 45 (1999)
    Issue (Month): 12 (December)
    Pages: 1639-1649

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    Handle: RePEc:inm:ormnsc:v:45:y:1999:i:12:p:1639-1649

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    Related research

    Keywords: capacity; investment; pricing; competition; production; inventory; strategy; demand uncertainty;

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    Cited by:
    1. Granot, Daniel & Yin, Shuya, 2007. "On sequential commitment in the price-dependent newsvendor model," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 177(2), pages 939-968, March.
    2. Sibdari, Soheil & Pyke, David F., 2014. "Dynamic pricing with uncertain production cost: An alternating-move approach," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 236(1), pages 218-228.
    3. Tang, Christopher & Tomlin, Brian, 2008. "The power of flexibility for mitigating supply chain risks," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 116(1), pages 12-27, November.
    4. Mohammad Ali Kashefi, 2013. "The Effect of Salvage Market on Strategic Technology Choice and Capacity Investment Decision of Firm under Demand Uncertainty," Iranian Economic Review, Economics faculty of Tehran university, vol. 18(1), pages 25-67, winter.
    5. Tang, Christopher S., 2010. "A review of marketing-operations interface models: From co-existence to coordination and collaboration," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 125(1), pages 22-40, May.
    6. Hai Che & Chakravarthi Narasimhan & V. Padmanabhan, 2010. "Leveraging uncertainty through backorder," Quantitative Marketing and Economics, Springer, vol. 8(3), pages 365-392, September.
    7. Reimann, Marc, 2012. "Accurate response by postponement," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 220(3), pages 619-628.
    8. Bish, Ebru K. & Hong, Seong J., 2006. "Coordinating the resource investment decision for a two-market, price-setting firm," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 101(1), pages 63-88, May.
    9. Nilsen, Jeffrey, 2013. "Delayed production and raw materials inventory under uncertainty," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 146(1), pages 337-345.
    10. Xiao, Tiaojun & Yang, Danqin, 2008. "Price and service competition of supply chains with risk-averse retailers under demand uncertainty," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 114(1), pages 187-200, July.
    11. Fleischmann, M. & Hall, J.M. & Pyke, D.F., 2005. "A Dynamic Pricing Model for Coordinated Sales and Operations," ERIM Report Series Research in Management ERS-2005-074-LIS, Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM), ERIM is the joint research institute of the Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University and the Erasmus School of Economics (ESE) at Erasmus University Rotterdam.
    12. Hsieh, Chung-Chi & Wu, Cheng-Han, 2009. "Coordinated decisions for substitutable products in a common retailer supply chain," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 196(1), pages 273-288, July.
    13. Gilbert, Stephen M. & Cvsa, Viswanath, 2003. "Strategic commitment to price to stimulate downstream innovation in a supply chain," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 150(3), pages 617-639, November.
    14. Fleischmann, M. & Hall, J.M. & Pyke, D.F., 2003. "Smart Pricing: Linking Pricing Decisions with Operational Insights," ERIM Report Series Research in Management ERS-2004-001-LIS, Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM), ERIM is the joint research institute of the Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University and the Erasmus School of Economics (ESE) at Erasmus University Rotterdam.
    15. Hagspiel, V., 2011. "Flexibility in technology choice: A real options approach," Open Access publications from Tilburg University urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-5258278, Tilburg University.
    16. Jiang, Li, 2012. "The implications of postponement on contract design and channel performance," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 216(2), pages 356-366.
    17. Yang, L. & Ng, C.T. & Cheng, T.C.E., 2011. "Optimal production strategy under demand fluctuations: Technology versus capacity," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 214(2), pages 393-402, October.
    18. Yang, Liu & Ng, C.T., 2014. "Flexible capacity strategy with multiple market periods under demand uncertainty and investment constraint," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 236(2), pages 511-521.
    19. Jin, Mingzhou & David Wu, S., 2007. "Capacity reservation contracts for high-tech industry," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 176(3), pages 1659-1677, February.
    20. Chernonog, Tatyana & Avinadav, Tal, 2014. "Profit criteria involving risk in price setting of virtual products," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 236(1), pages 351-360.
    21. Dong, Lingxiu & Kouvelis, Panos & Su, Ping, 2013. "Global facility network design in the presence of competition," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 228(2), pages 437-446.
    22. Poretus, Evan L. & Angelus, Alexander, 2000. "Simultaneous Production and Capacity Management under Stochastic Demand for Perishable Goods," Research Papers 1419r, Stanford University, Graduate School of Business.
    23. Chou, Yon-Chun & Chung, Hsien-Jung, 2009. "Service-based capacity strategy for manufacturing service duopoly of differentiated prices and lognormal random demand," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 121(1), pages 162-175, September.
    24. Tan, Zhijia & Yang, Hai, 2012. "Flexible build-operate-transfer contracts for road franchising under demand uncertainty," Transportation Research Part B: Methodological, Elsevier, vol. 46(10), pages 1419-1439.

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