Video rental chain Blockbuster has had a tough couple of years, and now it’s staring down an unlikely foe–strong box office results at theatres that make people less likely to rent movies and plop on the couch.
The company estimates that 3 million more people are going to the movies this year compared to last year, and that’s before the real blockbusters are released. And toss in that the company is still being hammered by online products and Netflix’s push to domination.
The CEO pointed to a number of initiatives that could improve performance later in the year, including a strong lineup of films such as “Star Trek” and “Fast and Furious.” Blockbuster is also looking to sell consumer products like “movie-themed sunglasses” and Blu-ray players in stores, grow its Netflix-like DVD-by-mail and digital download businesses, and roll out more than 3,000 Redbox-like kiosks through a partnership with manufacturer NCR. Blockbuster is also looking to slash $250 million in costs through store closures and other initiatives.
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