Blockbuster Done

Published in CSP Daily News

Owner DISH closing remaining stores, ending DVD-by-mail services

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- DISH Network Corp. has announced that its subsidiary, Blockbuster LLC, will end its retail and by-mail DVD distribution operations by early-Jan. 2014. The company will close its approximately 300 remaining U.S.-based retail stores, as well as its distribution centers.

"This is not an easy decision, yet consumer demand is clearly moving to digital distribution of video entertainment," said Joseph P. Clayton, DISH president and CEO. "Despite our closing of the physical distribution elements of the business, we continue to see value in the Blockbuster brand, and we expect to leverage that brand as we continue to expand our digital offerings."

The Blockbuster By Mail service will end in mid-Dec. and will serve existing customers until that time.

Over the past 18 months, Blockbuster has divested itself of assets in the United States, as well international assets, including operations in the United Kingdom and Scandinavia. DISH will continue to support Blockbuster's domestic and international franchise operations, relationships and agreements.

DISH will retain licensing rights to the Blockbuster brand and key assets, including the company's significant video library. DISH will focus on delivering the Blockbuster @Home service to DISH customers, and on its transactional streaming service for the general market, Blockbuster On Demand.

The Blockbuster @Home service offers more than 15 movie channels including STARZ Cinema, EPIX, Sony Movie Channel, and Hallmark Movie Channel, plus more than 20,000 movies and TV shows streamed to TVs, computers or iPads. The service includes access to the Blockbuster @Home app currently available to the millions of TVs served by DISH's Hopper Whole-Home HD DVR set-top box.

Available to anyone, Blockbuster On Demand is a transactional streaming video service offering thousands of movies viewable on connected devices including PCs, tablets, smartphones, Slingbox, Roku and select Samsung TVs and Blu-ray players.

Jim Keyes, former CEO of Dallas-based convenience retailer 7-Eleven Inc., served as Blockbuster's CEO until DISH Network acquired it in 2011.

DISH Network, through its subsidiary DISH Network LLC, provides approximately 14.014 million satellite TV customers with programming and technology.