Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Blockbuster not such a Blockbuster anymore

Remember the days when the whole family would pile into the car to drive down to Blockbuster and pick up a family-friendly movie to watch after TGIF on ABC? Ah, the golden age of Blockbuster -- in deed the golden age of entertainment before the Intenet -- certainly before YouTube.

As with all things tangible that we can drive to, with the exception of buying clothing, food, and gasoline, Blockbuster is rumored to be the next giant to fall into bankruptcy. It doesn't come as a surprise; even with the advent of their online availability, Blockbuster was simply piggybacking on the NetFlix idea, which caught on like the British Invasion... and so the Internet option for Blockbuster was overlooked for most move renters.

The Blockbuster bankruptcy is not a sure thing -- the company is doing everything it can to avoid chapter 11, including meeting with Hollywood bigwigs and making stronger efforts to compete with RedBox. But all that said, most financial experts agree that a bankruptcy filing or at least some pre-bankruptcy steps will be taken as early as the middle of September 2010. Right now Blockbuster mouthpieces are not saying "bankruptcy" outright, but what they are saying is something along the lines ofd "financial restructuring -- essentially code for bankruptcy with a plan for growth during and after. So what's next for blockbuster pre, during and post-bankruptcy? Likely rebranding efforts to compete with RedBox in a similar fashion with kiosks in familiar places like Walmart, etc. as well as an aggressive knock on Hollywood's door to secure some sort of proprietary partnership that competitors like RedBox and NetFlix won't be privy to.

They may just pull it off. Just as Tom McAvity and other knowledgeable bankruptcy attorneys will tell you, bankruptcy can be the best way to turn a financial future around, and in the case of Blockbuster, it may give them just the time they need to get some actionable marketing steps going to keep from going under.

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