Why is Blockbuster Suffering? Simple, Says CEO Jim Keyes. Because the Movies Suck.
Jim Keyes has a point. Because would you really wanna go to Blockbuster to rent Punisher: War Zone? Did not think so.
Shortly after Dallas-based Blockbuster reported a quarterly loss of $359.7 million yesterday, CEO Jim Keyes hopped on a conference call with analysts to reassure them that, look, all's not lost. And while there are myriad reasons for the current state of hurt ar 1201 Elm Street that has led to shares worth 80 cents today -- competition from Netflix, which is currently trading well above the $41 mark, and the set-top box's failure to launch so far -- Keyes had some not-especially-kind things to offer to the folks who stock Blockbuster's shelves. Seeking Alpha offers the earnings-call transcript in which Keyes says:
We think the single biggest driver in the current marketplace the last few months has been title strength and this week is a classic example. Box office is down 56% this week versus the previous year. I think the titles say it all. This week we are proud to offer Punisher: War Zone and Elegy, which are good movies but stacked up against last year's Enchanted, Atonement and I Am Legend, I think that kind of says it all. We have been facing this the last couple of months. Good movies but not great box office hits that we have had. At the same time we have seen unprecedented theatrical strength. As you know this is great for our business in about three months. When it is going on it represents a draw in particular on Friday and Saturday nights for those people who decide to go to the theaters so see Slumdog Millionaire, Watchmen, Paul Blart Mall Cop, and so that has had an effect on us for the first quarter as well.