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Impact of Competition on Product Decisions: Movie Choices of Exhibitors

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  • A. Yeşim Orhun

    () (Stephen M. Ross School of Business, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109)

  • Sriram Venkataraman

    () (Kenan-Flagler Business School, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina 27599)

  • Pradeep K. Chintagunta

    () (Booth School of Business, University of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois 60637)

Abstract

We empirically study the impact of the entry of a new theater on two important product decisions that incumbents in the movie exhibition industry face: (1) whether to invest in screening movies that are expected to be popular, and (2) when to adopt new releases. For theaters, both of these decisions feature a cost-demand trade-off inherent in quality decisions: Although screening popular and recent movies brings more patrons to the theater, distributors take a higher share of the revenue for such movies. The impact of competitive entry on the incumbent’s quality decisions is ambiguous, as it may simultaneously increase the competitive pressure to invest more in these dimensions of quality and also change the demand conditions that incumbents face. We find that incumbent theaters do not increase the provision of popular and recent movies in response to rival entry. To identify the role of competitive incentives, we study the differential impact of entry based on whether the entrant belongs to the same parent firm as the incumbent theaters. This comparison reveals that competitive incentives push incumbents to screen movies with high expected success more frequently and to adopt movies sooner. The product responses we document have important implications for the revenue impact of entry and the conclusions that researchers can draw from this impact. Ignoring the provision of these quality dimensions suggests cannibalization to exceed business stealing, a conclusion that is reversed when we account for endogenous product responses. We also show that our findings on popularity and recency cannot be explained by concomitant changes in theaters’ other product decisions, such as the variety of movies screened.

Suggested Citation

  • A. Yeşim Orhun & Sriram Venkataraman & Pradeep K. Chintagunta, 2016. "Impact of Competition on Product Decisions: Movie Choices of Exhibitors," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 35(1), pages 73-92, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:inm:ormksc:v:35:y:2016:i:1:p:73-92
    DOI: 10.1287/mksc.2015.0909
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    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1287/mksc.2015.0909
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    Cited by:

    1. Ying Fan & Chenyu Yang, 2014. "Competition, Product Proliferation and Welfare: A Study of the U.S. Smartphone Market," Working Papers 14-14, NET Institute.
    2. Anita Rao & Wesley R. Hartmann, 2015. "Quality vs. variety: Trading larger screens for more shows in the era of digital cinema," Quantitative Marketing and Economics (QME), Springer, vol. 13(2), pages 117-134, June.
    3. O. Cem Ozturk & Pradeep K. Chintagunta & Sriram Venkataraman, 2019. "Consumer Response to Chapter 11 Bankruptcy: Negative Demand Spillover to Competitors," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 38(2), pages 296-316, March.
    4. Ricard Gil & Fernanda Gutierrez-Navratil, 2017. "Does Television Entry Decrease The Number Of Movie Theaters?," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 55(2), pages 736-756, April.
    5. Anita Rao & Wesley Hartmann, 2015. "Quality vs. variety: Trading larger screens for more shows in the era of digital cinema," Quantitative Marketing and Economics (QME), Springer, vol. 13(2), pages 117-134, June.

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