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Purchasing and Procurement

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  1. Session One: Course Overview
    2Topics
    |
    2 Assessments
  2. Session Two: Supply Chain Management Basics
    10Topics
  3. Session Three: The Purchasing Cycle
    12Topics
  4. Session Four: Purchasing Toolkit
    27Topics
  5. Session Five: Managing Competitive Bids
    14Topics
  6. Session Six: Improving Efficiency and Accuracy
    13Topics
  7. Session Seven: Improving Efficiency and Accuracy
    12Topics
  8. Session Eight: Managing Internal Relationships
    9Topics
  9. Session Nine: Tools of the Trade
    14Topics
  10. Session Ten: A Personal Action Plan
    3Topics
    |
    1 Assessment
Session 4, Topic 3
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About Oligopolies

1 Sep 2021
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In an oligopoly, there are usually just a small number of companies involved and they will collaborate to control the market and trade. For example, in 2008, there were just four cell phone companies controlling 90% of the cell phone market in the United States (Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile). If these companies strike a formal agreement to collude on pricing, we would call them a cartel. While cartels are illegal in many places and most instances, OPEC (Organization of Petroleum Exporting Companies) is a legal cartel that was intended to stabilize pricing and availability of oil around the world.

In contrast to an oligopoly is the second form of imperfect competition called monopolistic competition. In this scenario, there are many sellers producing many products. Most products sold here are differentiated by their brand, minor features, and/or quality. This is a very common situation for products sold in the United States. (In the marketplace, of course, nothing is so easily separated, a lot of overlap exists, and there are many arrangements made between individual buyers and sellers.)

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