After exactly three years, DVD and Blue-ray rental company RedBox is pulling out it’s 1400 rental kiosks and shutting down it’s Canadian Operations … does anybody care?
The message on Redbox Canadian website reads
“We were excited to bring our service here, but unfortunately, demand just didn’t meet our expectations. We will be focusing our attention on our U.S. business, where demand for physical media remains strong.”
Redbox will stop renting DVDs on Valentines Day and customers who have movies out will have until March 5th to return them.
Redbox started up in 2006 and quickly grew to gain more than 50% of the Physical video rental market in the US and passed the 1 Billion rental mark only 4 years after it began.
The success of RedBox DVD rentals south of the border was partly due to the closure of BlockBuster video stores in 2012 and despite streaming services like Netflix, Amazon and Hulu physical DVD rentals remains a viable business for both RedBox and Netflix in the US.
In Canada, RedBox launched and continued to operate with little or no marketing, thinking like Netflix, Canadian’s would know what the big red vending machine at the Supermarket was. Truth is most Canadian’s never heard of RedBox and some thought the RedBox kiosks were nothing more than another Coke Machine. RedBox kiosks could be found across the country in Walmart, Superstore, IGA, Sobeys, Safeway, 7-Eleven, Macs, Petro Canada and even a couple Tim Horton’s locations.
Redbox’s departure from Canada is no doubt partly due to Canadians love for Netflix and additional competition from newly launched streaming services like Shomi and Crave.
Canadian RedBox customers will be charged $1.5-$2 per day (+ tax) for outstanding movie rentals until they return them and after 20 days renters will become owners with a charge of $30 for DVDs and $40 for Blu-ray discs.
It is possible for some RedBox kiosks to be pulled out before March 5th, so if yours is gone and Redbox suggests you use their site to find other locations or call them at 1-855-733-2695.