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Blockbuster Bows Mobile Movies, Delays Shareholder Meeting

16 Apr, 2010 By: Erik Gruenwedel

Blockbuster April 16 formally began offering video-on-demand movie rentals to the HTC HD2 mobile phone from T-Mobile.

T-Mobile, with more than 33 million customers in the U.S., is the exclusive wireless carrier for Taiwan-based HTC Corp.

The previously announced deal, which represents the first download mobile movie application for Blockbuster, allows users to buy or rent new-release movies playable on their phones without first accessing a personal computer or being a Blockbuster subscriber.

Owners of the HTC HD2 phone who activate the Blockbuster On Demand App will receive two free catalog rentals from Paramount Pictures: Forrest Gump and Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.

The activation also qualifies the user for 50% off a separate digital rental, a free in-store rental (with a paid rental), a free one-month Blockbuster By Mail subscription and free one-day rental from Blockbuster Express kiosks.

Separately, Blockbuster, hinting at forward progress in its fiscal restructuring, said it would push back the annual shareholder meeting from May 26 to June 24.

“We believe the additional time will provide us with the greatest opportunity to successfully complete one or more of our ongoing recapitalization initiatives prior to the annual meeting, possibly resolving our [New York Stock Exchange] non-compliance and avoiding the need for a reverse stock split,” CFO Tom Casey said.

The news appeared to appease Wall Street, which elevated Blockbuster’s stock up more than 10%, to close at 40 cents per share in nearly three-times the average daily trading, or 23.3 million shares.

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