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Blockbuster Express Getting Summer Reprieve?

27 Jun, 2012 By: Erik Gruenwedel

Redbox parent Coinstar, as of June 23, officially owns Blockbuster Express rental kiosks with the intent of putting Redbox units in its 10,000-unit national retail footprint.

But the No. 1 kiosk rental vendor apparently isn't in a hurry to pull the plug on Express kiosks, according to an email sent June 26 to consumers.

The email - from Blockbuster Express - said the Express brand, which now is sublicensed by Redbox from NCR Corp. under a separate license held by the BB 2009 Trust, would continue to “offer great movies at an exceptional value” going forward.

Just how long that “exceptional value” will last isn't known, but it could be through Labor Day, according to customer service representative contacted at the Express website's toll free number.

“We don't know an exact date, but I would say by the end of the summer,” the representative said.

A click on Express' frequently asked questions revealed that the remaining kiosks would no longer offer an in-stock guarantee on new releases and that Express rental returns cannot be done at a Redbox kiosk. In addition, Express promotional or Groupon codes cannot be used at Redbox.

Consumers attempting to return a rental where an Express kiosk once was should either locate another Express unit, call customer service or give the movie to a customer service representative at the retail location where the kiosk used to be.

Express meanwhile is still offering previously viewed movies for sale, starting at $4.99.

A Redbox rep was not immediately available for comment.

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