Market Cannibalization

The negative impact of a company's new product on the sales performance of its existing related products.

If a company is practicing market cannibalization, it is eating its own market. For example, say Coca Cola puts out a new product called Coke2, and customers buy Coke2 instead of regular Coke. Although sales may be up for the new product, these sales may be eating into Coke's original market, in which case the overall company sales would not be increasing. Because of the possibility of market cannibalization, investors should always dig deeper, analyzing the source and impact of the success of a company's new but similar product.

Investment dictionary. . 2012.

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