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Author Topic: Blockbuster Canada in big trouble...  (Read 4453 times)

NorthernSolo

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Blockbuster Canada in big trouble...
« on: May 07, 2011, 02:09:18 PM »

So thanks to our US counterparts, the company is now in receivership. This does not bode well at all. Ironically, BBV Canada posted a profit of $410 million last year alone, but thanks to the american chain, we are now bankrupt.

 What happened is that while the US were in Chapter 11 last year, they racked up a debt of $70 million dollars and used us, the Canadian chain, as collateral. The money was used to cover the cost of new releases and titles for the US stores while they were broke. Now that the sale of the US chain to Dish is done, the states dumped the entire debt on us, rather than pay it off themselves.

 It looks grim right now, and I shudder to think what would happen should the company go bankrupt and close. Considering the lack of options for rentals in Canada (Rogers is getting out of the game, and Video 99 joints are useless) what will this mean for the future?
 
 I remain optimistic that we will find a buyer. With almost a half billion profit compared to the US stores still running at a loss, it would seem bad business sense for the company to close? It would also have a ripple effect on many other companies (eg: our transport company, vendors, and studios) and will also make games impossible to get without buying them.

  After speaking with a number of my regular customers, it appears as though the concept of us closing is a serious downer for a lot of people, who truly appreciate what we have to offer.  One customer in particular noted that without the staff at our store, they would have changed to streaming already, but enjoy coming in and discussing the movies and seeing the employees.

  I personally still see the brick and mortar stores as a viable business for at least 5 more years, until bandwith, cap and selection issues are ironed out by places like Rogers, Bell, etc...

  Any thoughts on the matter (which don't include slamming the company) are appreciated!
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jjreason

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Re: Blockbuster Canada in big trouble...
« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2011, 02:31:20 PM »

I think for the very reasons you've stated, someone will step in and buy it up. I wonder even if they company would consider selling the name & logo to someone who could split it off & run it as a separate entity... likely not, but it'd be worth a go. I think folks like the recognizability of the Blockbuster name and the fact that the stores are alike, no matter where you go. Hopefully they can breath some life back into it.  :happy0025:
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fishfan

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Re: Blockbuster Canada in big trouble...
« Reply #2 on: May 07, 2011, 03:38:20 PM »

As someone who enjoys renting both movies and games, and a former employee, I'd be sad to see it close.  I spoke to one of the managers at my local store and she said that the company is basically looking for an owner to buy the whole thing, where as rogers has offered to pick up stores here and there.  I'd rather they stay BB as I'm not a fan of the promotions that Rogers offers over BB.  While some store may have to close due to density and customer base, I'm sure the company will be picked up as a whole in the short term.
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Canadian Jedi

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Re: Blockbuster Canada in big trouble...
« Reply #3 on: May 07, 2011, 10:22:16 PM »

I too would be sad - like your customer - I enjoying going to the Whitby BB - discussing videos etc.   It is in a great location - easy to stop by.  The coupon program and the buy 5 get on free (buy 2.5 on Wednesdays get one free) get me going in on a regular basis.
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cash_fan

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Re: Blockbuster Canada in big trouble...
« Reply #4 on: May 08, 2011, 02:04:21 PM »

This isn't a knock against anyone that works at BBV or frequents them a lot but to be honest I haven't rented a movie for about the last two years from a store.  I have Netflix now for catalog movies and if I want to see a new release I just download it on my PS3 for the same price that I would have got it for at a store.  Sure it takes half an hour to download but so would driving to the store and back.  Also when I download it I have it for 30 days so I can watch it over and over again if I feel so inclined.  When I'm in the US I use RedBox.  It cost only 99 cents a day and is as simple as using a Coke machine. 

Having said that I do wish BBV the best because I do buy video games there from every couple of months or so especially when they have some of their good sales. 
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Canadian Jedi

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Re: Blockbuster Canada in big trouble...
« Reply #5 on: May 08, 2011, 03:27:47 PM »

I think it comes down to the social aspects for me.  I enjoy talking about and getting movie recommendations with the staff.  Netflix does not offer that.  I get the movies for 2 weeks and I get several other things for free from them via the coupon program i.e. free video games for a month, rent 2 get 1 free. I will be disappointed if they do not make it but based on the stats I do not believe that long term they will be around.  I know I would not invest in their industry - it is all about downloading.  And when I am forced to I will join the rest of the NETFLIX crowd.
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Hellboy

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Re: Blockbuster Canada in big trouble...
« Reply #6 on: May 08, 2011, 11:18:42 PM »

I don't get netflix... we did the month free trial and there was absolutely nothing on there I was interested in watching. I'm not a BB patron but when I rent something I like to physically have it in my posession. I hooked up with Rogers. We have On Demand, Pay Per View... blah, blah... and it costs the same as renting a real Blu-Ray/DVD but the brick an mortar offers better deals and I like going to the store.

People keep saying downloadable content is the future... I hate that idea. I still buy my music on CDs and I love my DVD/BluRay library.
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fishfan

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Re: Blockbuster Canada in big trouble...
« Reply #7 on: May 09, 2011, 02:00:16 PM »

I tried Netflix for a month and found out that I had a monthly d/l limit on my rogers account.  Thankfully I didn't go over it.  The other thing I like about renting at BBV compared to a PPV or on demand in addition to the interaction with other people who enjoy movies, and the deals you can get (don't see a free movie after any amount of PPV from rogers) is the fact that the DVD/Blu-rays typically have some sort of special features and sound choice setups.  On Demand doesn't (or didn't the couple of times I've used it) and is just as expensive if not a buck or two more than renting at BBV, especially if you order something in HD.
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jjreason

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Re: Blockbuster Canada in big trouble...
« Reply #8 on: May 09, 2011, 04:16:42 PM »

Same here, FF, but I did go over mine by about $5 worth. So what happened you ask? Rogers won - of course. I upgraded my internet account ($15 per month to Rogers) then cancelled Netflix. Of course I haven't downgraded my internet yet.... :speechless-smiley-004:
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Hellboy

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Re: Blockbuster Canada in big trouble...
« Reply #9 on: May 10, 2011, 08:45:46 PM »

Also... are streamed/broadcast HD movies not limited to 1080i whereas the BluRay is 1080p?
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NorthernSolo

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Re: Blockbuster Canada in big trouble...
« Reply #10 on: May 11, 2011, 10:23:19 AM »

Also... are streamed/broadcast HD movies not limited to 1080i whereas the BluRay is 1080p?

Ya - all "HD" TV is only 1080i.....Not enough bandwith. Also the reason that 3-D channels are rare so far too...
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NorthernSolo

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Re: Blockbuster Canada in big trouble...
« Reply #11 on: May 21, 2011, 01:39:59 PM »

New update - not a good one for a lot of employees. On Friday morning we had a conference call and were told that 150 stores in Canada will be closing in 2 weeks. Luckily, my store is not one of them. That being said, with that many stores, it equals out to ~ 1500 people who just lost their jobs. I know locally (Durham) that North Ajax, and Whites Road are gone. Liverpool Rd, South Ajax, Brooklin, and Whitby Mall stores remain. They say that they are doing this to make the company more inticing for a potential buyer (all stores will now be pulling a profit) but it sucks for the guys in stores that got shut. A lot of them were friends of mine. I have had a feeling of sickness for the unlucky stores, mixed with a sense of relief that I (for now) still have a job to go to.
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NorthernSolo

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Re: Blockbuster Canada in big trouble...
« Reply #12 on: May 21, 2011, 01:45:36 PM »

Another point - from an article I read online -

 If everything goes streaming and on-demand, the availability of older titles and foreign films and documentaries is going to plummet! The article interviewed some guy who ran an independent vid store in BC and he basically pointed out that an entire generation will grow up not knowing about the classic films, and simply rot their brains watching all the current crap that Hollywood puts out.

 The chances of finding titles like Restrepo, Incendies, and the old classic Cary Grant/Bogie/Cagney stuff will be zero for services like Rogers and Bell.
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Wedge1021

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Re: Blockbuster Canada in big trouble...
« Reply #13 on: May 21, 2011, 07:45:58 PM »

The idea of streaming "rented" movies, etc just does not appeal to me. I do not even watch tv episodes online for 'free'. I much prefer to have a physical copy that I can watch whenever and wherever I want. I also prefer to own these copies for movies that I know and love - including the old classics. But then I also like to hold a bound book made out of paper when I read as well. I stare at a computer enough as it is, sometimes I need a break! I realize that as a 20-something I may be in the minority amongst my peers, though...
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Radiation74

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Re: Blockbuster Canada in big trouble...
« Reply #14 on: May 21, 2011, 07:55:17 PM »

New update - not a good one for a lot of employees. On Friday morning we had a conference call and were told that 150 stores in Canada will be closing in 2 weeks. Luckily, my store is not one of them. That being said, with that many stores, it equals out to ~ 1500 people who just lost their jobs. I know locally (Durham) that North Ajax, and Whites Road are gone. Liverpool Rd, South Ajax, Brooklin, and Whitby Mall stores remain. They say that they are doing this to make the company more inticing for a potential buyer (all stores will now be pulling a profit) but it sucks for the guys in stores that got shut. A lot of them were friends of mine. I have had a feeling of sickness for the unlucky stores, mixed with a sense of relief that I (for now) still have a job to go to.

My gf preordered the sw blu for me in Jan. She paid for it in full at BB. I told her then that might not have been the best idea. We got a refund. What would happen in that case, if we didn't get a refund? Would we be out that money? Would another store honor the preorder? Also, what happens when I have BB gift cards? And blockbuster video games? Let me guess, I would be out of luck, but blockbuster would send me to collections for their rentals that I still have.....
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