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Is Bundling Anticompetitive?


  • Ioana Chioveanu

    () (Universidad de Alicante)


I analyze the implications of bundling on price competition in a market with complementary products. Using a model of imperfect competition with product differentiation, I identify the incentives to bundle for two types of demand functions and study how they change with the size of the bundle. With an inelastic demand, bundling creates an advantage over uncoordinated rivals who cannot improve by bundling. I show that this no longer holds with an elastic demand. The incentives to bundle are stronger and the market outcome is symmetric bundling, the most competitive one. Profits are lowest and consumer surplus is maximized.

Suggested Citation

  • Ioana Chioveanu, 2008. "Is Bundling Anticompetitive?," Working Papers. Serie AD 2008-04, Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie).
  • Handle: RePEc:ivi:wpasad:2008-04

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Economides, Nicholas & Salop, Steven C, 1992. "Competition and Integration among Complements, and Network Market Structure," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 40(1), pages 105-123, March.
    2. Barry Nalebuff, 2000. "Competing Against Bundles," Yale School of Management Working Papers ysm157, Yale School of Management.
    3. Nirvikar Singh & Xavier Vives, 1984. "Price and Quantity Competition in a Differentiated Duopoly," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 15(4), pages 546-554, Winter.
    4. Matutes, Carmen & Regibeau, Pierre, 1992. "Compatibility and Bundling of Complementary Goods in a Duopoly," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 40(1), pages 37-54, March.
    5. R. Preston McAfee & John McMillan & Michael D. Whinston, 1989. "Multiproduct Monopoly, Commodity Bundling, and Correlation of Values," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 104(2), pages 371-383.
    6. Xavier Vives, 2001. "Oligopoly Pricing: Old Ideas and New Tools," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 026272040x, January.
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    More about this item


    Bundling; complementary goods; product differentiation;

    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

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