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Blockbuster Adds 500,000 Subs in 30 Days

26 Sep, 2011 By: Erik Gruenwedel

Ninety-day free trial for new Dish subscribers who opt in produces “surprising” interest, said Blockbuster executive

Blockbuster has added nearly 500,000 new subscribers to its by-mail disc rental service in the past 30 days, according to the chain’s president, Michael Kelly.

Speaking during the Sept. 23 launch of Dish Network Corp.’s Blockbuster Movie Pass platform, Kelly didn’t disclose how many of the subs are free trial memberships offered with new Dish satellite TV packages and how many are actual paying customers.

Regardless, a trial membership still requires the subscriber to opt in voluntarily — an indication the subscriber is at least interested in renting physical media.

“[This] is perhaps more [interesting] given the recent events in our industry,” Kelly said, alluding to Netflix subscriber unrest over price increases and rollout of the non-compatible (with Netflix) Qwikster disc service.

Meanwhile, Kelly said Blockbuster signed up 300,000 minors to its “Camp Wanna Watch a Movie” program that offers discounts on age-appropriate titles and related merchandise.

Kelly said that Blockbuster’s transactional VOD service, Blockbuster On Demand, would launch shortly on Facebook.

About the Author: Erik Gruenwedel

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