Reza Ahmadi

Professor in Decisions, Operations, and Technology Management

Phone: (310) 825-2502

reza.ahmadi@anderson.ucla.edu

Biography

With a background in industrial engineering, Professor Ahmadi worked as a systems analyst before joining the UCLA Anderson School in 1988. He has published many articles in Operations Research, Management Science and many other leading journals in the field of operations management.

Education

Ph.D. Operations Management, 1988, University of Texas at Austin
M.S. Operations Research, 1984, University of Texas at Austin
B.S. Industrial Engineering, 1978, New Mexico State University

Interests

Operations Management, Product Design and Development, Supply Chain Management with Gray Markets
  • F. Iravani, S. Dasu, R. Ahmadi. (2012). A Hierarchical Framework for Organizing a Software Development Process. Operations Research, Forthcoming. [ Link ]
  • S. Dasu, R. Ahmadi, S.M. Carr. (2012). Gray Markets, A Product of Demand Uncertainty and Excess Inventory. Production and Operations Management, Forthcoming. [ Link ]
  • T.A. Roemer, R. Ahmadi, S. Dasu. (August 2012). The Traveling Salesman Problem with Flexible Coloring. Discrete Applied Mathematics, 160(12): 1798-1814. [ Link ]
  • F. Iravani, H. Mamani & R. Ahmadi. (October 2011). Coping with Gray Markets: The Impact of Market Conditions and Product Characteristics. [ Download ] [ Show Abstract ]
    Gray markets, also known as parallel imports, are marketplaces for trading genuine products that are diverted from authorized distribution channels. They have created fierce competition for manufacturers in many industries and each year billions of dollars worth of products are traded in these markets. Using a game-theoretic model, we analyze the impact of parallel importation on a price-setting manufacturer that serves two markets with uncertain demand. We characterize the optimal joint price and quantity decisions of the manufacturer which determine whether the manufacturer should ignore, block, or allow parallel importation. We also show that parallel importation forces the manufacturer to reduce her price gap while demand uncertainty forces her to lower prices in both markets. Moreover, we observe that parallel importation may force the manufacturer to exit the low-profit market. Through extensive numerical experiments, we explore the impact of market conditions (size and price elasticity) and product characteristics (a fashion item or a commodity) on the manufacturer's reaction to parallel importation. In addition, we provide interesting insights about the value of strategic pricing for coping with gray markets versus the uniform pricing policy that has been adopted by some companies to eliminate gray markets.
  • F. Iravani, S. Dasu, R. Ahmadi. (April 2013). Beyond Price Mechanisms: How Much Can Service Help Manage the Competition from Gray Markets?. [ Link ] [ Download ] [ Show Abstract ]
    Companies operating global supply chains in various industries struggle to thwart parallel importers diverting brand goods from authorized channels and selling them in gray markets. Given that price differentials are the primary drivers of gray markets, research studying gray market impact mainly focuses on pricing. This paper develops a Stackelberg game model to examine the role of demand enhancing services as a non-price mechanism for coping with gray markets. We consider a manufacturer that sells a product in two markets and a parallel importer that transfers the product from the low-price market to the high-price market and competes with the manufacturer on price and service. We show that parallel importation forces the manufacturer to reduce the price gap and provide more service in both markets. We observe that a little service can go a long way in boosting the profit of the manufacturer and that service helps the manufacturer to differentiate herself from the parallel importer when consumers become indifferent between the two sellers. We also show that the manufacturer may increase profits by tolerating more gray market activity but charging gray market customers for service. Finally, we explore the impact of decentralizing the supply chain and delegating the service decision to a retailer on the amount of service, the volume of gray goods and supply chain profit.