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Competition in Two-Sided Markets

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  • Mark Armstrong

    (University College London)

Abstract

There are many examples of markets involving two groups of agents who need to interact via 'platforms', and where one group's benefit from joining a platform depends on the number of agents from the other group who join the same platform. This paper presents theoretical models for three variants of such markets: a monopoly platform; a model of competing platforms where each agent must choose to join a single platform; and a model of 'competing bottlenecks', where one group wishes to join all platforms. The main determinants of equilibrium prices are (i) the relative sizes of the cross-group externalities, (ii) whether fees are levied on a lump-sum or per-transaction basis, and (iii) whether a group joins just one platform or joins all platforms.

Suggested Citation

  • Mark Armstrong, 2005. "Competition in Two-Sided Markets," Industrial Organization 0505009, EconWPA.
  • Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpio:0505009
    Note: Type of Document - pdf; pages: 32
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Jean-Charles Rochet & Jean Tirole, 2014. "Platform Competition in Two-Sided Markets," CPI Journal, Competition Policy International, vol. 10.
    2. Armstrong, Mark & Vickers, John, 2001. "Competitive Price Discrimination," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 32(4), pages 579-605, Winter.
    3. van Raalte, Chris & Webers, Harry, 1998. "Spatial competition with intermediated matching," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 34(3), pages 477-488, March.
    4. Konrad Stahl, 1982. "Location and Spatial Pricing Theory with Nonconvex Transportation Cost Schedules," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 13(2), pages 575-582, Autumn.
    5. Wright, Julian, 2002. "Access Pricing under Competition: An Application to Cellular Networks," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(3), pages 289-315, September.
    6. Dobson, Paul W & Waterson, Michael, 1997. "Countervailing Power and Consumer Prices," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 107(441), pages 418-430, March.
    7. Mark Armstrong & Julian Wright, 2007. "Two-sided Markets, Competitive Bottlenecks and Exclusive Contracts," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 32(2), pages 353-380, August.
    8. Armstrong, Mark, 2001. "The theory of access pricing and interconnection," MPRA Paper 15608, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Howard Smith & Donald Hay, 2005. "Streets, Malls, and Supermarkets," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 14(1), pages 29-59, March.
    10. Beggs, Alan W, 1994. "Mergers and Malls," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 42(4), pages 419-428, December.
    11. Anthony Dukes & Esther Gal–Or, 2003. "Negotiations and Exclusivity Contracts for Advertising," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 22(2), pages 222-245, November.
    12. Gabszewicz, Jean J. & Laussel, Dider & Sonnac, Nathalie, 2001. "Press advertising and the ascent of the 'Pensee Unique'," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(4-6), pages 641-651, May.
    13. Klemperer, Paul D & Meyer, Margaret A, 1989. "Supply Function Equilibria in Oligopoly under Uncertainty," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(6), pages 1243-1277, November.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Two-sided markets; network externalities; supermarkets; advertising;

    JEL classification:

    • L - Industrial Organization

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