Unbundling the incumbent and deployment of high-speed internet: Evidence from France
Journal article, 2019

In this paper, we study the impact of competition on the legacy copper network on the deployment of high-speed broadband. We first develop a theoretical model, which shows that the relation between the number of competitors and investment in a quality-improving technology can be positive if the quality of the new technology is high enough, and is negative otherwise. We test these theoretical predictions using data on broadband deployments in France in more than 36,000 local municipalities. First, using panel data over the period 2011–2014, we estimate a model of entry into local markets by alternative operators using local loop unbundling (LLU). Second, using cross-sectional data for the year 2015, we estimate how the number of LLU entrants impacts the deployment of high-speed broadband with speed of 30 Mbps or more by means of VDSL, cable and fiber technologies, controlling for the endogeneity of LLU entry. We find that a higher number of LLU competitors in a municipality implies lower incentives to deploy and expand coverage of high-speed broadband with speed of 30 Mbps or more.

High-speed broadband

Market entry

Local loop unbundling



Marc Bourreau


Lukasz Grzybowski

University of Cape Town


Maude Hasbi

Chalmers, Technology Management and Economics, Science, Technology and Society

International Journal of Industrial Organization

0167-7187 (ISSN)

Vol. 67 102526

Subject Categories

Transport Systems and Logistics


Probability Theory and Statistics



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