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Two-Sided Competition and Differentiation (with an Application to Media)


  • Guillaume Roger

    () (School of Economics, The University of New South Wales)


We model a duopoly in which two-sided platforms compete on both sides of a two-sided market. Platforms (or intermediaries) select the quality they offer consumers, and the prices they charge to consumers and firms. In this model, non-trivial competition on both sides induces non-quasiconcave payoffs in one subgame. All equilibria are characterized. Under well-defined conditions, the unique equilibrium in pure strategies can be computed. Prices entail a discount on one side, a premium on the other one and the quality offered to consumers is distorted downward. When the pure-strategy equilibrium fails to exist, a mixed-strategy equilibrium is shown to always exist and the distributions are characterized. In this case, the market may be preempted ex post. The model may find applications in the media, internet trading platforms, the software industry or even the health care industry (HMO/PPO).

Suggested Citation

  • Guillaume Roger, 2010. "Two-Sided Competition and Differentiation (with an Application to Media)," Discussion Papers 2010-27, School of Economics, The University of New South Wales.
  • Handle: RePEc:swe:wpaper:2010-27

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Kaiser, Ulrich & Wright, Julian, 2006. "Price structure in two-sided markets: Evidence from the magazine industry," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 24(1), pages 1-28, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. Blasco, Andrea & Sobbrio, Francesco, 2012. "Competition and commercial media bias," Telecommunications Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(5), pages 434-447.
    2. Blasco, Andrea & Pin, Paolo & Sobbrio, Francesco, 2016. "Paying positive to go negative: Advertisers׳ competition and media reports," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 83(C), pages 243-261.

    More about this item


    Two-Sided Market; Vertical Differentiation; Industrial Organization; Platform Competition;

    JEL classification:

    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • D43 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Oligopoly and Other Forms of Market Imperfection
    • D62 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Externalities
    • L13 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Oligopoly and Other Imperfect Markets
    • L15 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Information and Product Quality

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