Oligopoly Market: Types and Features

oligopoly examples in india

In a heterogeneous oligopoly, the firms produce nearly similar products as in a homogeneous oligopoly, but the products differ according to specific parameters. For example, the cosmetics industry produces similar products but they market these products in a way that displays its superiority over its competition. In this manner, companies try to gain a better standing in the market by introducing different features of their products. Oligopolies need to have at least 3 companies present in the market to be considered an oligopoly.

So, the differences between the price of products will be insignificant. Hence, the interdependence among sellers decreases in the case of a differentiated oligopoly market. Due to severe competition ‘and interdependence of the firms, various sales promotion techniques are used to promote sales of the product.


International trade has increased from $5 trillion USD in 1994 to $24 trillion USD in 2014. Following current trends, this number will only increase in the future as an increasing of firms are now competing internationally. Different from domestic oligopolies, international oligopolies have to consider importing and exporting tariffs as countries have different international policies. This is described as “strategic trade policy” and uses both the Bertrand and Cournot models as examples of interdependence.

  • Here are different reason and causes of different types of oligopoly market to illustrate the oligopoly meaning.
  • The music entertainment industry, too, is dominated by only a handful of players, such as Universal Music Group, Sony, and Warner.
  • While other businesses could enter an oligopoly, it is more likely that investors would seek to enter a niche with open competition rather than trying to break into a market that is already controlled by a few major players.
  • The term oligopoly is derived from ‘oligi’, meaning few and ‘polein’, meaning to sell.
  • This is the reason the prices of the services are based on competitors’ pricing and the STC have to respond in relation with the moves of its competitors in the market (Baines, Fill, & Page, 2011).

However, increase in price is not matched by the rivals and the firm loses its market share due to costlier product. Price increase by an individual firm decreases sales substantially but price reduction by the same firm does not increase sales to any significant extent. In the figure below, if firm increases the price above the point- P i. E by PP1 then quantity decreases by MM1, this is the elastic portion of demand curve as percentage change in quantity is more than percentage change in price .

What are the different types of markets?

The easiest way to find out whether an industry is an oligopoly is to determine the concentration ratio of that industry. This ratio reflects the share in the total output of an industry that is controlled by the largest four to eight firms. The high level of concentration and large size of firms in an oligopoly industry create serious barriers to entry for potential competitors. If the firm produces a differentiated product the industry is called a differentiated or imperfect oligopoly. An oligopoly is where a few firms rule the market and compete with each other to remain at the top of the market.

A monopoly is one firm holding concentrated market power, a duopoly consists of two firms, and an oligopoly is two or more firms. While these companies are still technically considered competitors within their particular market, they also tend to cooperate or coordinate with each other to benefit the group as a whole. This anti-competitive behavior can lead to higher prices for consumers.

Oligopoly market Examples In World

Make a list of at least five ways that firms in a competitive oligopoly can use non-price methods. You can refer to the lesson, but try to recall as many non-price methods from memory as you can. Tesla is considered to be in a partial oligopoly market because it is clearly the leader in the EV industry. Apart from three, there are hardly any players in this sector as they command almost 100 % of the global market share. Regardless of the brand of computer, the operating system will always be sure from any of those described above three. The number of firms is limited in the case of oligopoly which becomes a disadvantage for the consumer.

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Under oligopoly, the exact behaviour pattern of a producer cannot be determined with certainty. So, demand curve faced by an oligopolist is indeterminate (uncertain). As firms are inter-dependent, a firm cannot ignore oligopoly examples in india the reaction of the rival firms. Any change in price by one firm may lead to change in prices by the competing firms. So, demand curve keeps on shifting and it is not definite, rather it is indeterminate.


Food manufacturers, chemical companies, apparel, and supermarket chains are just a few more to look out for. Throughout history, there have been oligopolies in many different industries, including steel manufacturing, oil, railroads, tire manufacturing, grocery store chains, and wireless carriers. Other industries with an oligopoly structure are airlines and pharmaceuticals. For example, market for cars in India is dominated by few firms (Maruti, Tata, Hyundai, Ford, Honda, etc.). A change by any one firm (say, Tata) in any of its vehicle (say, Indica) will induce other firms (say, Maruti, Hyundai, etc.) to make changes in their respective vehicles. The number of the firms is so small that an action by any one firm is likely to affect the rival firms.

Next to these companies are LG and Motorola, with a market share of 12% and 7%, respectively. The key to the ascent of this company was due to the union of qualities of its founders, Jobs was a visionary in the business world and… A few years ago, Pepsi launched itself in one litre and 1.5 litre non-returnable PET bottles at a discount in comparison to a 300 ml returnable glass bottle, the traditional packaging in this product category. This resulted in a significant increase in the depth of consumption; amongst the loyal consumers in the larger towns. Oligopolistic firms that operate on a national or global scale are also huge in another sense – they are just plain big. Many have several hundred thousand employees and multi-billions of dollars in assets.

Is this the right time to invest in the Telecom Sector?

In many cases, the consumer has to choose the firm which is the least evil in the case of providing services. It has disadvantages to the economy, consumers, and the firm as well. The market share of firm A and B are the same which means the demand is also the same for both of these firms. Afterwards, prices are increased to 24 per unit, which gives loss to the firm (a large part of the market), and sales of the firm are 140 units which cause a loss of 100 units.

What is an oligopoly market examples today?

An oligopolistic market is a market dominated by a few large and interdependent firms. There are many examples of oligopolies in the real world. Examples include airlines, automobile manufacturers, steel producers, and petrochemical and pharmaceutical companies.

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