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Optimal pricing and production decisions in reusable container systems

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2010
Atamer, Büşra
In this study, we focus on pricing and production decisions in reusable container systems with stochastic demand. We consider a producer that sells a single product to the customers in reusable containers with two supply options: (i) brand-new containers, (ii) returned containers from customers. Customers purchasing the products may return the containers to the producer to receive a deposit price. The return quantity depends on both customer demand and the deposit price determined by the producer. Hence, the producer has the opportunity to manipulate the return quantity via the deposit price. The unit cost of filling brand-new containers is diff erent than the unit cost of refilling returned containers. We also consider resource restrictions on the production operations. Our setting represents certain hybrid manufacturing / remanufacturing systems where (i) the producer collects and recovers his own products, (ii) the producer supplies both brand-new and recovered products to his customers, and (iii) the customers are indi erent between brand-new and recovered products. In this setting, we investigate the optimal pricing and production decisions in order to maximize the producer`s profit. Our approach utilizes non-linear optimization techniques. We characterize the optimal acquisition fee and the optimal order quantity of brand-new containers analytically and investigate the eff ect of parameters with an extensive computational study.