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Bundling Revisited: Substitute Products and Inter-Firm Discounts

  • Mark Armstrong

This paper extends the standard model of bundling to allow products to be substitutes and for products to be supplied by separate sellers.� Whether integrated or separate, firms have an incentive to introduce a bundling discount when demand for the bundle is elastic relative to demand for stand-alone products.� When products are partial substitutes, this typically gives an integrated firm a greater incentive to offer a bundle discount (relative to the standard model with additive preferences), while product substitutability is often the sole reason why separate sellers wish to offer inter-firm discounts.� When separate sellers negotiate their inter-firm discount, they can use the discount to relax competition.

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File URL: http://www.economics.ox.ac.uk/materials/papers/5401/paper574.pdf
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Paper provided by University of Oxford, Department of Economics in its series Economics Series Working Papers with number 574.

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Date of creation: 01 Oct 2011
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Handle: RePEc:oxf:wpaper:574
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  1. Lewbel, Arthur, 1985. "Bundling of substitutes or complements," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 3(1), pages 101-107, March.
  2. Joshua S. Gans & Stephen P. King, 2006. "PAYING FOR LOYALTY: PRODUCT BUNDLING IN OLIGOPOLY -super-* ," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 54(1), pages 43-62, 03.
  3. John Thanassoulis, 2006. "Competitive Mixed Bundling and Consumer Surplus," Economics Series Working Papers 263, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  4. R. Venkatesh & Wagner Kamakura, 2003. "Optimal Bundling and Pricing under a Monopoly: Contrasting Complements and Substitutes from Independently Valued Products," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 76(2), pages 211-232, April.
  5. Adams, William James & Yellen, Janet L, 1976. "Commodity Bundling and the Burden of Monopoly," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 90(3), pages 475-98, August.
  6. Schmalensee, Richard, 1982. "Commodity Bundling by Single-Product Monopolies," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 25(1), pages 67-71, April.
  7. McAfee, R Preston & McMillan, John & Whinston, Michael D, 1989. "Multiproduct Monopoly, Commodity Bundling, and Correlation of Values," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 104(2), pages 371-83, May.
  8. Matthew Gentzkow, 2007. "Valuing New Goods in a Model with Complementarity: Online Newspapers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(3), pages 713-744, June.
  9. Calzolari, Giacomo & Denicolò, Vincenzo, 2009. "Competition with exclusive contracts and market-share discounts," CEPR Discussion Papers 7613, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Brueckner, Jan K., 2001. "The economics of international codesharing: an analysis of airline alliances," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 19(10), pages 1475-1498, December.
  11. Kenneth S. Corts, 1998. "Third-Degree Price Discrimination in Oligopoly: All-Out Competition and Strategic Commitment," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 29(2), pages 306-323, Summer.
  12. Claudio Lucarelli & Sean Nicholson & Minjae Song, 2010. "Bundling Among Rivals: A Case of Pharmaceutical Cocktails," NBER Working Papers 16321, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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