First, Blockbuster. Now, Rogers Video. Canadians are officially without a national video rental chain. (And the majority likely won't even notice.)
Rogers is exiting the rapidly shrinking video rental business after revenue from Rogers Video stores plummeted 43% last year to $82 million. Nearly 500 locations across Canada are liquidating stock. Most of the stores will be kept by Rogers and remodelled to showcase the telco's wireless offerings - cellular, television, and internet.
“We wound up our rental business at the end of last week. We are now in the process of liquidating all of the videos and DVDs,” Leigh-Ann Popek, a spokeswoman for the company, told the Financial Post. “All of the locations will stay open but will be repurposed to showcase our wireless sales and service as well as our wireline offerings such as cable, home phone and Internet.”
Rogers' video rental business has been losing money for years. The Toronto-based telecommunications company has wanted out since 2009. With total revenues of more than $12 billion, Rogers won't miss video, which makes less than 1% of its money.
Why is video rental dying? Streaming video, of course. Well over one million households - roughly 10% of Canada - already subscribe to Netflix alone, with many more Canadians giving money to a smattering of similar companies.