Capital Budgeting for Interrelated Projects: A Real Options Approach
Posted: 6 Aug 1998
This paper explores the effect of project interrelationships on investment decisions and project values in a real options framework. We examine in detail the mutually exclusive case where a firm may invest in the development stage of two projects and then may select only a single project to implement. The firm can develop the projects in parallel or in sequence. The choice of development policy depends on the relative values of the embedded options for each strategy. Sequential development is shown to be superior to parallel development when projects have highly correlated values, and when they require a large commitment of capital for development, are short term in nature, and have relatively low volatility. We also show that the optimal ordering of sequential projects does not always begin with the most profitable project.
JEL Classification: G31, G32
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