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Blockbuster Revenues Up 1.3 Percent

12 Feb, 2002 By: Joan Villa

Blockbuster eked out 1.3 percent higher revenues of $1.36 billion in the fourth quarter over the year-ago period and boosted full-year revenues 4 percent to $5.16 billion.

The retailer took one-time charges of $40 million in the quarter and a $400 million for the year for a remerchandising effort that removed a quarter of VHS inventory and highlighted DVD rental. The DVD format now comprises 30 percent of the chain's rental revenue after transactions climbed 160 percent in 2001. For 2002, the company will add 300 stores evenly divided between the U.S. and overseas, CEO John Antioco said.

In addition, Blockbuster will continue remerchandising to emphasize DVD and game formats, beginning with a new push on game hardware by adding PlayStation 2 player sales in 3,000 locations this week. The company's goal is to grow games from 10 percent of revenue to 20 percent in 2003 through rental and sales and the possible addition of used game "trading," stand-alone game stores and online gaming, Antioco said.

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