Strategic Management Review > Vol 4 > Issue 2

Endgame in the Internet Era

Kathryn Rudie Harrigan, Columbia Business School, USA,
Suggested Citation
Kathryn Rudie Harrigan (2023), "Endgame in the Internet Era", Strategic Management Review: Vol. 4: No. 2, pp 231-260.

Publication Date: 14 Jun 2023
© 2023 now Publishers, Inc.
Competitive strategy,  Collaborative strategy,  Corporate strategy,  Knowledge, innovation, and technology,  Organization and strategy


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In this article:
The Pre-Internet Endgame Strategies 
Pre-Internet Patterns of Declining Demand 
Pre-Internet Exit Barriers 
The World Wide Web and Competitive Viability in Endgame 
Countervailing Forces of Internet Affecting Endgame Viability 
Areas for Future Research Concerning Endgame Competition 


Strategies for coping with businesses that face the declining demand of late life-cycle products are revisited in light of the enhanced competitive capabilities made possible by access to the World Wide Web and connectivity to the Internet. Presumably endgame competitors may draw upon a wider variety of implementation options on both the demand and supply sides when serving the highly connected markets reached via Internet access. Results are posited to be mixed since supply-chain activities enhanced by Internet access could extend the long tail of distribution concerning how long demand for obsolete or unfashionable products may endure. Economic exit barriers that prevent competitors from rationalizing excess capacity are reduced, so risk should be lower too. But the Internet milieu makes new entry easier for marginal competitors from lower-wage venues who could use price-cutting tactics to erode the accumulated value of extant firms' brand equity and otherwise negate past investments in product differentiation in ways that will collapse the high profit margins typically enjoyed within well-managed endgame industries. Accordingly, managerial responses for coping with declining demand will differ during the post-Internet era from how firms competed in the pre-Internet era.