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Blockbuster, Outdone by Netflix, Will Shut Its Stores And DVD Mail Service (NYT)
Blockbuster, which had more than 9,000 retail stores across America just nine years ago, is closing the few hundred video-rental stores that it still has, the company’s owner, Dish Network, said on Wednesday in a bittersweet but long-expected announcement. Dish, which acquired Blockbuster through a bankruptcy auction in 2011, after the retailer had already been crushed by digital video distributors like Netflix, said it still saw value in the brand name and would use it in limited ways. But it will close all Blockbuster locations — it says there are about 300 left — and the distribution centers that support its DVD-by-mail service, which is also being dismantled. Ad Age / Media News “This is not an easy decision, yet consumer demand is clearly moving to digital distribution of video entertainment,” Dish CEO Joseph Clayton said in the statement. “We continue to see value in the Blockbuster brand, and we expect to leverage that brand as we continue to expand our digital offerings.” LA Times / Company Town Founded in 1985, at its peak Blockbuster had close to 10,000 stores. It put smaller retailers out of business and gobbled up bigger competitors. In 1994, Viacom acquired Blockbuster and later spun it off in 2004.