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Horizontal Agreements and R&D Complementarities: Merger versus RJV

  • Ben Ferrett

    ()

    (School of Business and Economics, Loughborough University, UK)

  • Joanna Poyago-Theotoky

    (School of Economics, La Trobe University, Australia)

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, first, 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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File URL: http://www.lboro.ac.uk/departments/sbe/RePEc/lbo/lbowps/Ferrett_WP2012_4.pdf
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Paper provided by Department of Economics, Loughborough University in its series Discussion Paper Series with number 2012_04.

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Date of creation: Apr 2012
Date of revision: Apr 2012
Handle: RePEc:lbo:lbowps:2012_04
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Web page: http://www.lboro.ac.uk/departments/sbe/research/economics/index.html

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  1. 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.
  2. 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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  4. Joseph Farrell and Carl Shapiro., 2000. "Scale Economies and Synergies in Horizontal Merger Analysis," Economics Working Papers E00-291, University of California at Berkeley.
  5. Christos Cabolis & Constantine Manasakis & Emmanuel Petrakis, 2008. "Horizontal Mergers and Acquisitions with Endogenous Efficiency Gains," Working Papers 0817, University of Crete, Department of Economics.
  6. 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.
  7. 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.
  8. 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.
  9. Matsushima Noriaki & Sato Yasuhiro & Yamamoto Kazuhiro, 2013. "Horizontal Mergers, Firm Heterogeneity, and R&D Investments," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 13(2), pages 959-990, August.
  10. Fershtman, Chaim & Gandal, Neil, 1994. "Disadvantageous semicollusion," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 12(2), pages 141-154, June.
  11. 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.
  12. Carl Davidson & Ben Ferrett, 2007. "Mergers in Multidimensional Competition," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 74(296), pages 695-712, November.
  13. 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.
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  15. 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.
  16. 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.
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