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Corporate Leverage and Product Differentiation Strategy

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  • Arping, Stefan
  • Lóránth, Gyöngyi

Abstract

We explore the joint determination of product differentiation strategy and corporate leverage in a setting where (i) product differentiation is valued by customers; (ii) debt is necessary to discipline managers; and (iii) liquidation is costly for customers, in particular, when products are highly differentiated from competitors' products. We show that when managerial incentive problems call for high leverage, firms position their products closer to competitors to reduce deadweight costs customers incur in liquidation. We discuss our findings in light of case study evidence.

Suggested Citation

  • Arping, Stefan & Lóránth, Gyöngyi, 2002. "Corporate Leverage and Product Differentiation Strategy," CEPR Discussion Papers 3451, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:3451
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    Cited by:

    1. Chi-Lin Yang & Jung-Ho Lai, 2021. "Influence of Cross-Listing on the Relationship between Financial Leverage and R&D Investment: A Sustainable Development Strategy," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 13(18), pages 1-14, September.
    2. Chi-Lin Yang & Min-Hsien Chiang & Chien-Wei Chen, 2019. "Financial leverage and competitive strategy of cross-listing firms," Australian Journal of Management, Australian School of Business, vol. 44(2), pages 306-324, May.
    3. CLAUDINE KEARNEY & KILLIAN J. McCARTHY & EELKO K. R. E. HUIZINGH, 2019. "One Size (Does Not) Fit All: Evidence Of Similarities And Differences Between Product Innovation Management In High- And Low-Tech Manufacturing Firms," International Journal of Innovation Management (ijim), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 23(01), pages 1-30, January.
    4. Cristina Aybar-Arias & Alejandro Casino-Martínez & José López-Gracia, 2012. "On the adjustment speed of SMEs to their optimal capital structure," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 39(4), pages 977-996, November.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    customer lock-in strategies; innovation; leverage; liquidation costs; product differentiation;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • G3 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance
    • L1 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance
    • L2 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior

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