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The Economics of Strategic Opportunity

  • Jerker Denrell
  • Christina Fang
  • Sidney Winter

As emphasized by Barney (1986), any explanation of superior profitability must account for why the resources supporting such profitability could have been acquired for a price below their rent generating capacity. Building upon the literature in economics on coordination failures and incomplete markets, we suggest a framework for analyzing such strategic factor market inefficiencies. Our point of departure is that a strategic opportunity exists whenever prices fail to reflect the value of a resource's best use. This paper examines the challenges of imputing a resource's value in the absence of explicit price guidance and suggests the likely characteristics of strategic opportunities. Our framework also suggests that the discovery of strategic opportunity is often a matter of serendipity and access to relevant idiosyncratic resources. This latter observation provides prescriptive advice, although the analysis also explains why more detailed guidance has to be firm specific.

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Paper provided by Laboratory of Economics and Management (LEM), Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies, Pisa, Italy in its series LEM Papers Series with number 2003/10.

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Date of creation: 12 Dec 2003
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Handle: RePEc:ssa:lemwps:2003/10
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