Where do you rent your movies from?

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Robert Ma, Jul 13, 2003.

  1. Robert Ma

    Robert Ma Second Unit

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    There is a local video store near me for sale. Do people actually go anywhere other than Blockbuster or Hollywood Video?

    I am thinking about checking it out and seeing the retail space. Maybe I could do other things on top of the rental sales like selling home theater equipment and satellite installations. Maybe used video games swapping like EB does and anything else I can think of.

    Bottom line is I am starting to think how I could make a buck threw other means like this. I am a computer engineer that has been out of work for some time now and my unemployment benni's are running dry. I never thought I'd see the day I couldn't get a computer related job but its been 6 months and nothing appears to be breaking my way. I run a small business (www.extendedtools.com) but its not pulling in the cash I need. The days of making money in I.T. are over!


    So what do you think? Do people use mom and pop video stores (excluding porn!)? Anyone have any brilliant ideas on a business that could succeed with less than 75K startup funds?
     
  2. MikeAlletto

    MikeAlletto Cinematographer

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    I haven't been inside a video store since I started using netflix in '99.
     
  3. Robert Ma

    Robert Ma Second Unit

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    Yea. I was also thinking that if I went down this road I would come up with a plan simular to Netflix with the monthly deal. It would be hard though to have enough stock of the newer movies with people keeping them out for extended times on a plan like that...
     
  4. KyleK

    KyleK Second Unit

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    There is a locally owned store called DVD WORLD that I go to. I know the son of the guy that owns it and he says that business has been good. They use the no late-fees model, 3 bucks for three days and a dollar every day after that. They have quite a good selection for being a small mom'n'pop store, with independent, arthouse, box sets you can't rent anywhere else, the only thing they are somewhat lacking in is that they don't have enough big Hollywood titles![​IMG]

    The way they got started was to put an ad in the entertainment section of the paper with a dollar off or 2-fer-1 coupon to attract business.

    If the store is large enough and in a good location, buy it and make it a one-stop HT place!


    Kyle[​IMG]


    P.S. Don't forget to have a prominently displyed OAR vs. P&S example. [​IMG]
     
  5. Russell B

    Russell B Stunt Coordinator

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    Rent out a big selection of adult movies and that will bring people in as its a big business. Hollywood Video and Blockbuster Video don't do that so you would have something over them.
     
  6. Jason Seaver

    Jason Seaver Lead Actor

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    The last time I rented must have been five years ago (if I don't see it in theaters, I probably won't see it), but when I did, location was paramount for me. I was always the "rent it on the way home from work, watch it that night, return it on the way to work" type; I don't know how many of those are left.

    And, like they say... The back room pays the bills. My brother managed a video store for a couple years, and as he told it, you can buy a whole box of adult movies for what one new release VHS costs, and charge more per rental.
     
  7. Tony-B

    Tony-B Producer

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    I rent from Hollywood Video.
     
  8. Scott L

    Scott L Producer

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    Hollywood Video customer also. There are Blockbusters in my area (one even closer than Hollywood) but the service at Hollywood is great, and everything is widescreen too! I've thought hard about getting a Netflix subscription but there are many weekends where me and some friends would rather browse a large selection right then & there before heading off to my place.

    They pick something I wouldn't have picked and vice-versa. I get to see a movie I normally wouldn't have chosen. But at $4 a pop it does get kinda pricey. Not much more than Netflix though.

    If there was a place that did something like $3 up front, then $1 everyday after I just might make a switch!
     
  9. David Preston

    David Preston Supporting Actor

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    I still go to Blockbuster only because it is closest. Customer service is not thr greatest. If it's a comedy I just order it on Direst TV. Wish there was a Hollywood video closer.
     
  10. Robert Ma

    Robert Ma Second Unit

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    I went and saw the video store tonight. It’s located in the main strip mall in a small town about 10 – 12 miles from a very busy retail flooded road. There is a Subway, UPS type store, Chinese, and Italian restaurant in the same strip that I remember. Maybe an auto parts store to. Right next to the mall is a giant Wredners supermarket. Overall the location is decent. It is a really nice town from what I saw and a safe neighborhood. Blockbuster video is located 10 – 12 miles away. Not too far but you would have to deal with the traffic on the busy retail road which is really bad so I can see how they have held onto their customers who wouldn’t want to drive that far and in traffic to boot.

    The store appeared really clean from the outside. The sign above the store is well lit as well as a small sign on the strip malls entrance list. There is a nice old style movie theater poster cabinet in the front window and a theater style popcorn machine inside for free popcorn while you are browsing the selection. It was not a complete mess like many local video stores I have seen.

    They have a small game section I could see in the front of the store and rows of video tapes stretch the store like a typical video store. Without getting inside it’s tough to call but it appears too small for home theater equipment sales. I’d be interested in seeing the back room for expanding the retail space but I bet turning that into an “adult” section would be the best way to raise the stores profits. That and expanding the game section is the only way I could see turning it into a higher profit store (65-75K per year). I think it has been run good so tweaking regular video sales much may be difficult.

    I have started reading and one of the things I think is a requirement is owner financing. Take a look at this article under number 2: http://www.bcentral.com/articles/anthony/145.asp

    Say 60k was the settled buying price (The woman is asking 75K but just wants an offer now). 20% down is 12K out of pocket with the remaining 48K to be owner financed over 5 years. If her numbers are correct at 35k take home per year, the business would bring back 175k minus the loan payment by the time the loan is paid off. At 8% interest on that loan, it would be around $975 a month or close to 12K a year for the loan. There is still a 23K year profit in the 5 years of purchasing the business until it’s paid off. 23K is not a lot of money per year for the first 5 years but the start up costs are very low at 12k (price of a used car!) and this is a business that my wife could eventually run on her own some day when I am back in corporate america.

    I have been looking at others on the internet and it seems that the selling price is always 2 – 4 times the amount of the cash flow. So that means to buy a business with my target 65-75k cash flow, it would be in the 150-250k range. This rental store may not be the right buy, but it’s certainly in the right price range to begin looking at for me.

    Now if anyone here is a small business owner that could give me any tips on buying a store....let them fly!
     
  11. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Executive Producer

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    I never go to Blockbuster as a matter of policy. I don’t use Hollywood Video mostly because I prefer to support a local Dallas business (2 stores, I think) that carries a large selection of classic and foreign films (and lots of Criteriions)—everybody has the recently released ones. You might contact Premier Video in Dallas (the address is on Mockingbird Lane) and ask them about their business model and its success.

    But truthfully, I use Netflix more than I rent from the local store.
     
  12. Chris Hovanic

    Chris Hovanic Supporting Actor

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    recent subscriber to Netflix. all the Mom and Pops in my small town dried up when blockbuster and hollywood came to town.

    All they cary is P&S. Talking to the manager at blockbuster and he informed me that when given the choice between Widescreen and standard (or P&S) they will always buy the P&S. [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    That is reason #1 for gining with Netflix. #2 would be the price.

    Good luck on your business endevors.
     
  13. DonRoeber

    DonRoeber Screenwriter

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    I'm also a fairly recent subscriber to Netflix; I've been with them about two months I guess. It's so great that I don't even bother looking around for good video rental stores anymore. Sorry [​IMG]
     
  14. Robert Ma

    Robert Ma Second Unit

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    I agree with the Netflix system (fixed amount for unlimited rentals). I do feel that by slightly cutting Netflix's monthly price and having local instant gratification when wanting to rent something may help the store compete.

    But, I do not want to rely soley on video rentals. My plan would be to expand the business into home theater gear and other areas like satelite installations, etc. Unfortunatley, while this store seems like a decent location, and cleanly driven, it may be too small of a retail space for my vision.

    Today I will see the back room with what potential it has for expansion.
     
  15. Richard Travale

    Richard Travale Producer

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    There is a local store here called Van-Isle Video that I rent pretty much exclusively from. The staff is great and they are usually good about widescreen. there has been a time or three where they have ordered only fullscreen when both are available, but that is extremely rare.
    The only time I go to BB is to check out their previously viewed section and to rent the rare PS2 game.
     
  16. Clinton McClure

    Clinton McClure Casual Enthusiast

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    To hell with Blockbuster! I rent from Hastings.
     
  17. ThomasC

    ThomasC Lead Actor

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  18. David-S

    David-S Second Unit

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  19. Robert Ma

    Robert Ma Second Unit

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    I went today to see it again inside. It is too small to do anything other than it already does (videos and games).

    My hunt continues.....I'm not crazy enough to rely on video rentals to make a living.
     
  20. Michael Hughes

    Michael Hughes Second Unit

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    I have used Netflix on and off for 3 or 4 years. I use the two out at a time plan for $15. Averaging about 6 movies a month for the convenience of dropping it in the mail and delivered to the home. The problme is you don't always get what you want, which has been the bane of most of the internet dvd rental plac es, once they get known, the hot new releases dry up in a hurry. Rentmydvd.com comes to mind, tried them for awhile, they were good, then after a few months I could nto get the 1st 10 movies in my que, no good. back to Netflix, who have come a long way and now are the ones to beat.

    I would consider a walk in store if I could keep the movie for 10 days or two weeks to make it convenient and compete with the mail option, and if they had some sort of "rent more the cheaper it gets" type of deal so it would urge folks to drop off the hot releases for more rentals.

    good luck in your startup
     

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