Jan 13, 2005

Its a Blockbuster alright.

A couple bloggers are waking up to the news (from last month) that Blockbuster (BBI) is ending late fees and changing to a policy of simply charging retail prices to customers that fail to return videos.

I rented videos there over the weekend and received the vague guidance that there were no late fees but the company would appreciate it if I brought the movies back within 10 days. No mention of the "you just bought it" side of the policy.

On another note, virtually every video was out. I guess when you take customer holding periods from 2-5 days to 10 days it eats into the available inventory. Shocking! Besides eliminating late fees the company is pushing its monthly fee service that allows users to have 2 movies on hand at a time. This has a similar inventory depleting effect and customers paying monthly fees probably get turned off looking through an empty video store.

I would say the company did not give much thought to the operational aspects of their new plan and this is going to turn into an absolutely giant disaster. It is a company with a ton of retail floor space in a business where floor space is just extra overhead.

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