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Outsourcing versus technology transfer: Hotelling meets Stackelberg

  • Pierce, Andrea
  • Sen, Debapriya

This paper considers a Hotelling duopoly with two firms A and B in the final good market. Both A and $B$ can produce the required intermediate good, firm B having a lower cost due to a superior technology. We compare two contracts: outsourcing (A orders the intermediate good from B) and technology transfer (B transfers its technology to A). First we show that an outsourcing order acts as a credible commitment on part of A to maintain a certain market share in the final good market. This generates an indirect Stackelberg leadership effect, which is absent in a technology transfer contract. We show that compared to the situation of no contracts, there are always Pareto improving outsourcing contracts but no Pareto improving technology transfer contracts. Finally, it is shown that whenever both firms prefer one of the two contracts, all consumers prefer the other contract.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 15673.

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Date of creation: 11 Jun 2009
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:15673
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  15. Sharmila Vishwasrao, 2004. "Royalties vs. fees: How do firms pay for foreign technology?," Working Papers 04023, Department of Economics, College of Business, Florida Atlantic University, revised Sep 2006.
  16. Toshihiro Matsumura & Noriaki Matsushima, 2009. "Cost differentials and mixed strategy equilibria in a Hotelling model," The Annals of Regional Science, Springer, vol. 43(1), pages 215-234, March.
  17. Milgrom, Paul & Roberts, John, 1988. " Communication and Inventory as Substitutes in Organizing Production," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 90(3), pages 275-89.
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  19. Yongmin Chen & Jota Ishikawa & Zhihao Yu, 2002. "Trade Liberalization and Strategic Outsourcing," Carleton Economic Papers 02-12, Carleton University, Department of Economics, revised Jul 2004.
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