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Authors

Yeong Seon Kang

Abstract

This study investigates the effects of the distribution channel structure on quality decisions under duopoly competition. I considers a set-up in which two retailers compete on product quality and retail price. In the set-up, the integrated retailer has the power to determine the quality of its exclusive product, while the decentralized retailer does not. For the decentralized retailer, the supplier determines product quality. I find that asymmetric pairs of a decentralized channel by one retailer and an integrated channel by the other retailer can be a Nash equilibrium in a simultaneous-channel- choice model. The two retailers select different levels of quality, and this quality competition benefits retailers by softening price competition. In a sequential-channel-choice model, I find that the leader can obtain a first-mover advantage. From the perspective of the supplier, which can decide the distribution channel structure and level of quality, both suppliers choose the decentralized channel in equilibrium.

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