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Complementary Platforms

  • Jo Reynaerts
  • Patrick Van Cayseele

We introduce an analytical framework close to the canonical model of platform competition investigated by Rochet and Tirole (2006) to study pricing decisions in two-sided markets when two or more platforms are needed simultaneously for the successful completion of a transaction. The model developed is a natural extension of the Cournot-Ellet theory of complementary monopoly featuring clear cut asymmetric single- and multihoming patterns across the market. The results indicate that the so-called anticommons problem generalizes to two-sided markets because individual platforms do not take into account the negative pricing externality they exert on the other platforms. As a result, mergers between such platforms may be welfare enhancing, but involve redistribution of surplus from one side of the market to the other. Moreover, the limit of an atomistic allocation of property rights however is not monopoly pricing, indicating that there also exist differences with the received theory of complementarity.

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Paper provided by LICOS - Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance, KU Leuven in its series LICOS Discussion Papers with number 18607.

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Length: 36 pages
Date of creation: 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:lic:licosd:18607
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  1. Anthony Scott, 1955. "The Fishery: The Objectives of Sole Ownership," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 63, pages 116.
  2. H. Scott Gordon, 1954. "The Economic Theory of a Common-Property Resource: The Fishery," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 62, pages 124.
  3. Feinberg, Yossi & Kamien, Morton I., 2001. "Highway robbery: complementary monopoly and the hold-up problem," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 19(10), pages 1603-1621, December.
  4. Buchanan, James M & Yoon, Yong J, 2000. "Symmetric Tragedies: Commons and Anticommons," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 43(1), pages 1-13, April.
  5. Jean-Charles Rochet & Jean Triole, 2002. "Platform Competition in Two Sided Markets," FMG Discussion Papers dp409, Financial Markets Group.
  6. Wilko Bolt & Alexander F Tieman, 2005. "Skewed Pricing in Two-Sided Markets: An IO approach," Money Macro and Finance (MMF) Research Group Conference 2005 75, Money Macro and Finance Research Group.
  7. Mark Bagnoli & Ted Bergstrom, 2005. "Log-concave probability and its applications," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 26(2), pages 445-469, 08.
  8. Jean Tirole, 1988. "The Theory of Industrial Organization," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262200716, June.
  9. Joseph J. Spengler, 1950. "Vertical Integration and Antitrust Policy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 58, pages 347.
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