Export or Merge? Proximity vs. Concentration in Product Space
AbstractThis paper proposes a proximity-concentration tradeoff in product space as a determinant of horizontal foreign direct investment (FDI). Firms that enter a foreign market by exporting are able to capture consumer surplus from introducing a differentiated product with characteristics that the incumbent cannot match. In relatively globalized product space, in contrast, consumers perceive an entrant's difference to existing products as less pronounced, so a consumer's virtual distance costs in product space are lower and a merger with an incumbent (horizontal FDI) offers pricing power that allows the entrant to extract consumer rent. Lower physical trade costs of shipping make Bertrand price competition fiercer in differentiated product space and can provide an additional incentive for a merger. A basic product space model with a linear Hotelling setup can therefore explain why FDI has become more frequent in recent periods in the presence of falling trade costs. Cross-border merger and acquisitions data support the model's prediction that horizontal FDI grows relatively faster than exports in differentiated goods industries, compared to homogeneous-goods industries.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 19751.
Date of creation: Dec 2013
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- Marc-Andreas Muendler, 2013. "Export or Merge? Proximity vs. Concentration in Product Space," CESifo Working Paper Series 4558, CESifo Group Munich.
- Muendler, Marc-Andreas, 2014. "Export or Merge? Proximity vs. Concentration in Product Space," CAGE Online Working Paper Series 180, Competitive Advantage in the Global Economy (CAGE).
- F12 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Models of Trade with Imperfect Competition and Scale Economies; Fragmentation
- F23 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - Multinational Firms; International Business
- L12 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Monopoly; Monopolization Strategies
- L13 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Oligopoly and Other Imperfect Markets
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2013-12-29 (All new papers)
- NEP-COM-2013-12-29 (Industrial Competition)
- NEP-INT-2013-12-29 (International Trade)
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