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A Simple Theory of Predation

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  • Chiara Fumagalli
  • Massimo Motta

Abstract

We propose a simple theory of predatory pricing, based on incumbency advantages, scale economies and sequential buyers (or markets). The prey needs to reach a critical scale to be successful. The incumbent (or predator) has an initial advantage and is ready to make losses on earlier buyers so as to deprive the prey of the scale the latter needs, thus making monopoly profits on later buyers. Several extensions are considered, including cases where scale economies exist because of demand externalities or two-sided market effects, and where markets are characterized by common costs. Conditions under which predation may (or not) take place in actual cases are also discussed.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University in its series Working Papers with number 437.

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Date of creation: 2012
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Handle: RePEc:igi:igierp:437

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  1. Dennis W. Carlton & Michael Waldman, 1998. "The Strategic Use Of Tying To Preserve And Create Market Power In Evolving Industries," University of Chicago - George G. Stigler Center for Study of Economy and State 145, Chicago - Center for Study of Economy and State.
  2. Liliane Karlinger & Massimo Motta, 2012. "Exclusionary Pricing When Scale Matters," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 60(1), pages 75-103, 03.
  3. Innes, Robert & Sexton, Richard J, 1994. "Strategic Buyers and Exclusionary Contracts," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(3), pages 566-84, June.
  4. Gans, Joshua S. & King, Stephen P., 2002. "Exclusionary contracts and competition for large buyers," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 20(9), pages 1363-1381, November.
  5. Paul Milgrom & John Roberts, 1997. "Predation, reputation , and entry deterrence," Levine's Working Paper Archive 1460, David K. Levine.
  6. Chiara Fumagalli & Massimo Motta, 2006. "Exclusive Dealing and Entry, when Buyers Compete," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(3), pages 785-795, June.
  7. B. Douglas Bernheim & Michael D. Whinston, 1998. "Exclusive Dealing," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(1), pages 64-103, February.
  8. Rasmusen, Eric B & Ramseyer, J Mark & Wiley, John S, Jr, 1991. "Naked Exclusion," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(5), pages 1137-45, December.
  9. David Kreps & Robert Wilson, 1999. "Reputation and Imperfect Information," Levine's Working Paper Archive 238, David K. Levine.
  10. Karlinger, Liliane & Motta, Massimo, 2007. "Exclusionary Pricing and Rebates When Scale Matters," CEPR Discussion Papers 6258, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  11. Bolton, Patrick & Scharfstein, David S, 1990. "A Theory of Predation Based on Agency Problems in Financial Contracting," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(1), pages 93-106, March.
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