Competitive interplay of production decisions: Rivalry between established and startup firms

Moren Levesque, Xuan Jen Zhao, Junsong Bian

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


This paper's novelty is the modeling of competition in production quantity and product-launch timing, which has been silent regarding the impact of these interdependent decisions on firm survival. We rigorously address the competitive interplay between a startup and an established rival by developing a game-theoretic model that captures the startup's vulnerability to failure through maximizing its survival likelihood. We allow the established rival to behave strategically by anticipating the startup's timing and production decisions prior to making its own production decision. We propose that unless the market-entry investment is low, a survival-maximizing startup should wait to launch its product, and do so with a larger production output than the established rival, when delaying the product launch enables the startup to charge a high price. Insights on the established firm involve the benefit from behaving strategically, which is when competing with either a survival-maximizing or profit-maximizing startup. If the market-entry investment is large, comparing a survival-maximizing startup with a profit-maximizing startup suggests that the former produces at a larger scale than the latter when either startup competes with an established rival, which in turn is forced to reduce its production level.

Original languageEnglish
Article number8052140
Pages (from-to)85-98
Number of pages14
JournalIEEE Transactions on Engineering Management
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2018


  • Business startup
  • cournot competition
  • game theory
  • market entry timing
  • production decision
  • profit maximization
  • survival maximization


Dive into the research topics of 'Competitive interplay of production decisions: Rivalry between established and startup firms'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this