More troubling news, this time a video rental franchise teetering on the brink of insolvency. Video stores were great places to go and immerse yourself in our once-vibrant movie culture. With that culture on the ropes, it's no surprise to see those stores begin to evaporate, joining independent bookstores and record stores. It makes this old bastard a bit weepy.
Another 400 Video Stores to Close Joining Previous 520
Movie Gallery has announced that it will close another 400 stores from its Hollywood Video and Movie Gallery chains, which join the 520 it had previously marked for closings (see "Movie Gallery Shutters 520 Stores"). That will bring the closings to roughly 20% of the troubled chain, which filed Chapter 11 last year (see "Movie Gallery Files Chapter 11").
On the positive side, the company appears poised to emerge from Chapter 11 this year. The company announced late last month that all of its key creditor groups had signed off on its reorganization plan, clearing the way to move forward.
Movie Gallery will emerge from bankruptcy with less debt and out of its leases on money-losing stores, perhaps allowing it to compete more effectively in a consolidating industry, with Wal-Mart, Netflix, and downloads all threatening its business model.