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Blockbuster COO Leaving

10 Sep, 2007 By: Erik Gruenwedel

Nick Shepherd

Less than five months after being promoted to the position of EVP and COO, Nick Shepherd will leave Blockbuster Inc. at the end of the month, the No. 1 video rental company said Sept. 10.

Dallas-based Blockbuster did not name a replacement for the 12-year veteran once considered a possible successor to former chairman and CEO John Antioco.

The COO position had been vacant since the end of 2004, following the departure of Nigel Travis.

Shepherd, who before being named COO was EVP and president, worldwide stores for Blockbuster, handled reporting duties for Blockbuster Online, in addition to his previous duties.

Shortly after his appointment as new Blockbuster chairman and CEO, Jim Keyes said he would initiate structural and personnel changes throughout the rental company during his first 100 days on the job.

“The board and I greatly appreciate the leadership Nick has provided to the company and the major role he has played in helping us lay the foundation for the transformation of Blockbuster from a video retailer into a company that provides completely convenient access to media entertainment,” Keyes said. “I am personally grateful for Nick's support during my early days here at the company and wish him well in his new endeavors.”

Shepherd, who earned a base salary of $700,000 plus incentives, joined Blockbuster in 1995 as managing director of the company's U.K. business and subsequently served in several executive positions including SVP international, chief marketing and merchandising officer, and president of worldwide stores.

Separately, Blockbuster named Keith Morrow chief information officer and David Podeschi SVP, merchandising, distribution and logistics.

Both Morrow and Podeschi most recently held similar positions at 7-Eleven Inc., where Keyes was CEO for 21 years.

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