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Product differentiation in successive vertical oligopolies

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  • Paul Belleflamme
  • Eric Toulemonde

Abstract

This is a successive oligopoly model with two varieties of a final product. Downstream firms choose one variety to sell on a final market. Upstream firms specialize in the production of one input specifically designed for one variety, but they also produce the input for the other variety at an extra cost. We show that as more downstream firms choose one particular variety, more upstream firms specialize in the input specific to that variety, and vice-versa. Multiple equilibria may result, and the softening effect of product differentiation on competition might not be strong enough to induce maximal differentiation.

Suggested Citation

  • Paul Belleflamme & Eric Toulemonde, 2003. "Product differentiation in successive vertical oligopolies," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 36(3), pages 523-545, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:cje:issued:v:36:y:2003:i:3:p:523-545
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. repec:eee:indorg:v:55:y:2017:i:c:p:25-57 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Erkal, Nisvan, 2007. "Buyer-supplier interaction, asset specificity, and product choice," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 25(5), pages 988-1010, October.
    3. José Pontes, 2007. "Networks and firm location," The Annals of Regional Science, Springer;Western Regional Science Association, vol. 41(4), pages 897-909, December.
    4. José Pedro Pontes, 2004. "Agglomeration in a Vertically-linked Oligopoly," Working Papers Department of Economics 2004/06, ISEG - Lisbon School of Economics and Management, Department of Economics, Universidade de Lisboa.
    5. E. Bacchiega & O. Bonroy, 2012. "Vertical relations and number of channels in quality-differentiated markets," Working Papers wp823, Dipartimento Scienze Economiche, Universita' di Bologna.
    6. Arijit Mukherjee & Piercarlo Zanchettin, 2012. "Vertical integration and product differentiation," Discussion Papers in Economics 12/17, Department of Economics, University of Leicester, revised Sep 2012.
    7. André Rocha & José Pedro Pontes, 2005. "Spatial Cournot Oligopoly with Vertical Linkages," Working Papers Department of Economics 2005/11, ISEG - Lisbon School of Economics and Management, Department of Economics, Universidade de Lisboa.
    8. Noriaki Matsushima & Tomomichi Mizuno, 2009. "Input specificity and product differentiation," ISER Discussion Paper 0745, Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University.
    9. Noriaki Matsushima, 2009. "VERTICAL MERGERS AND PRODUCT DIFFERENTIATION -super-," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 57(4), pages 812-834, December.
    10. Noriaki Matsushima, 2006. "Vertical mergers and product differentiation," Discussion Papers 2006-09, Kobe University, Graduate School of Business Administration.
    11. Matsushima, Noriaki, 2004. "Technology of upstream firms and equilibrium product differentiation," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 22(8-9), pages 1091-1114, November.
    12. Emanuele Bacchiega & Olivier Bonroy, 2015. "On the benefits of contractual inefficiency in quality-differentiated markets," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 67(3), pages 846-863.
    13. Jose Pedro Pontes, 2005. "Input Specificity and Location," Working Papers Department of Economics 2005/01, ISEG - Lisbon School of Economics and Management, Department of Economics, Universidade de Lisboa.
    14. Vermeulen, B. & Huisman, K.J.M. & Kok, A.G. de, 2015. "Vertical governance change and product differentiation under decreasing component costs," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 57(C), pages 65-76.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • L11 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Production, Pricing, and Market Structure; Size Distribution of Firms
    • L13 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Oligopoly and Other Imperfect Markets
    • L23 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Organization of Production

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