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Horizontal Agreements and R&D Complementarities: Merger versus RJV

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  • Ben Ferrett

    (School of Business and Economics, Loughborough University; GEP, University of Nottingham)

  • Joanna Poyago-Theotoky

    ()
    (School of Economics, La Trobe University; CRIEFF, University of St Andrews; Rimini Centre for Economic Analysis (RCEA); SIERC, Massey University)

Abstract

We study the decision of two firms within an oligopoly concerning whether to enter into a horizontal agreement to exploit complementarities between their R&D activities and, if so, whether to merge or form a research joint venture (RJV). In contrast to horizontal merger, there is a probability that an RJV contract will fail to enforce R&D sharing. We find that a horizontal agreement always arises. The insiders' merger/RJV choice involves a trade-off: While merger offers certainty that R&D complementarities will be exploited, it leads to a profit-reducing reaction by outsiders on the product market, where competition is Cournot. Greater brand similarity and contract enforceability ("quality") both favour RJV, while greater R&D complementarity favours merger. Interestingly, the insiders may choose to merge even when RJV contracts are always enforceable, and they may opt to form an RJV even when the likelihood of enforceability is negligible.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by The Rimini Centre for Economic Analysis in its series Working Paper Series with number 13_12.

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Date of creation: May 2012
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Handle: RePEc:rim:rimwps:13_12

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Related research

Keywords: horizontal merger; research joint venture (RJV); contract enforceability; process R&D; R&D complementarity;

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  1. Christos Cabolis & Constantine Manasakis & Emmanuel Petrakis, 2008. "Horizontal Mergers and Acquisitions with Endogenous Efficiency Gains," Working Papers 0817, University of Crete, Department of Economics.
  2. Pastor, Maite & Sandonis, Joel, 2002. "Research joint ventures vs. cross licensing agreements: an agency approach," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 215-249, February.
  3. Carl Davidson & Ben Ferrett, 2007. "Mergers in Multidimensional Competition," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 74(296), pages 695-712, November.
  4. Noriaki Matsushima & Yasuhiro Sato & Kazuhiro Yamamoto, 2009. "Horizontal mergers, firm heterogeneity, and R&D investments," ISER Discussion Paper 0754, Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University.
  5. Bhattacharya, S. & Glazer, J. & Sappington, D., 1991. "Licensing and the Sharing of Knowledge in Research Joint Ventures," Papers 9120, Tilburg - Center for Economic Research.
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  7. 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.
  8. Perez-Castrillo, J. David & Sandonis, Joel, 1997. "Disclosure of know-how in research joint ventures," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 15(1), pages 51-75, February.
  9. Salant, Stephen W & Switzer, Sheldon & Reynolds, Robert J, 1983. "Losses from Horizontal Merger: The Effects of an Exogenous Change in Industry Structure on Cournot-Nash Equilibrium," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 98(2), pages 185-99, May.
  10. Farrell, Joseph & Shapiro, Carl, 2000. "Scale Economies and Synergies in Horizontal Merger Analysis," Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt96z174x1, Department of Economics, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
  11. Lars-Hendrik Röller & Ralph Siebert & Mihkel M. Tombak, 2007. "Why Firms Form (or do not Form) RJVS," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 117(522), pages 1122-1144, 07.
  12. Klaus Gugler & Ralph Siebert, 2007. "Market Power versus Efficiency Effects of Mergers and Research Joint Ventures: Evidence from the Semiconductor Industry," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 89(4), pages 645-659, November.
  13. Darmot Leahy & J. Peter Neary, 1997. "Public Policy Towards R & D in Oligopolistic Industry," Politická ekonomie, University of Economics, Prague, vol. 1997(5), pages 683-698.
  14. Tao, Zhigang & Wu, Changqi, 1997. "On the organization of cooperative research and development: Theory and evidence," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 15(5), pages 573-596, August.
  15. Roberto Hern·n & Pedro L. MarÌn & Georges Siotis, 2003. "An empirical evaluation of the determinants of Research Joint Venture Formation," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 51(1), pages 75-89, 03.
  16. Gregor Andrade & Mark Mitchell & Erik Stafford, 2001. "New Evidence and Perspectives on Mergers," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(2), pages 103-120, Spring.
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