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Vertical integration and product differentiation

Author

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  • Arijit Mukherjee
  • Piercarlo Zanchettin

Abstract

We study horizontal product differentiation as a strategic decision of downstream firms facing a threat of vertical integration and market foreclosure by an upstream monopolist. We model product differentiation either as pure market segmentation or as generating positive value to consumers. Because of the threat of vertical integration, the downstream firms prefer more differentiation when the latter merely yields the anticompetitive effects of market segmentation, while they may prefer less differentiation when the latter would generate additional social value. Therefore, instead of market foreclosure, we indicate market segmentation or under-investment in socially valuable activities, such as product innovation, design, and informative advertising, as possible social costs of a lenient antitrust policy towards vertical mergers.

Suggested Citation

  • Arijit Mukherjee & Piercarlo Zanchettin, 2012. "Vertical integration and product differentiation," Discussion Papers in Economics 12/17, Division of Economics, School of Business, University of Leicester, revised Sep 2012.
  • Handle: RePEc:lec:leecon:12/17
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

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    3. Som Sekhar Bhattacharyya & Sumi Jha & Dinesh Sharma, 2020. "Development of a Scale on Individual Perspectives on Corporate Social Responsibility Constructs: Based on Microfoundation Theory," Vision, , vol. 24(1), pages 47-59, March.
    4. Tarun Jain & Jishnu Hazra & Jayashankar M. Swaminathan, 2019. "Excess procurement strategies by a dominant buyer under constrained supply," Naval Research Logistics (NRL), John Wiley & Sons, vol. 66(3), pages 272-280, April.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Vertical integration; product differentiation; market foreclosure; market segmentation.;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D43 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Oligopoly and Other Forms of Market Imperfection
    • L13 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Oligopoly and Other Imperfect Markets
    • L42 - Industrial Organization - - Antitrust Issues and Policies - - - Vertical Restraints; Resale Price Maintenance; Quantity Discounts

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