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An Economic Analysis of Platform Sharing

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  • Arghya Ghosh
  • Hodaka Morita

Abstract

We explore the managerial implications and economic consequences of platform sharing under models of horizontal and vertical product differentiation. By using a common platform across different products, firms can save on fixed costs for platform development. At the same time, platform sharing imposes restrictions on firms' ability to differentiate their products, and this reduces their profitability. It might appear that platform sharing across firms makes consumers worse off because firms cooperate in their product development processes to maximize their joint profit. We find, however, that platform sharing across firms benefits consumers in our framework because it intensifies competition in our horizontal differentiation model, and because it increases the quality of the lower-end product in our vertical differentiation model. We also show new channels through which a merger makes consumers worse off in the presence of platform sharing.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 13058.

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Date of creation: Apr 2007
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Publication status: published as Ghosh, Arghya & Morita, Hodaka, 2008. "An economic analysis of platform sharing," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 22(2), pages 164-186, June.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:13058

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  1. L. Lambertini & S. Poddar & D. Sasaki, 1997. "RJVs in Product Innovation and Cartel Stability," Working Papers 272, Dipartimento Scienze Economiche, Universita' di Bologna.
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  3. Choi, Jay Pil, 1993. "Cooperative R&D with product market competition," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 11(4), pages 553-571.
  4. V. Krishnan & Saurabh Gupta, 2001. "Appropriateness and Impact of Platform-Based Product Development," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 47(1), pages 52-68, January.
  5. Lin, Ping & Saggi, Kamal, 2002. "Product differentiation, process R&D, and the nature of market competition," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 46(1), pages 201-211, January.
  6. Mussa, Michael & Rosen, Sherwin, 1978. "Monopoly and product quality," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 301-317, August.
  7. Lambertini, Luca & Poddar, Sougata & Sasaki, Dan, 2002. "Research joint ventures, product differentiation, and price collusion," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 20(6), pages 829-854, June.
  8. Waldman, Michael, 1996. "Durable Goods Pricing When Quality Matters," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 69(4), pages 489-510, October.
  9. Suzumura, Kotaro, 1992. "Cooperative and Noncooperative R&D in an Oligopoly with Spillovers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(5), pages 1307-20, December.
  10. Kamien, Morton I & Muller, Eitan & Zang, Israel, 1992. "Research Joint Ventures and R&D Cartels," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(5), pages 1293-306, December.
  11. Nirvikar Singh & Xavier Vives, 1984. "Price and Quantity Competition in a Differentiated Duopoly," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 15(4), pages 546-554, Winter.
  12. Arghya Ghosh & Hodaka Morita, 2006. "Platform Sharing in a Differentiated Duopoly," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 15(2), pages 397-429, 06.
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Cited by:
  1. Ding, Ke, 2013. "Platforms and firm capabilities : a study of emerging global value chains," IDE Discussion Papers 432, Institute of Developing Economies, Japan External Trade Organization(JETRO).
  2. M. Bourreau & P. Dogan, . "Cooperation in Product Development and Process R&D Between Competitors," Working Paper 33645, Harvard University OpenScholar.

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