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VOL. 126 | NO. 23 | Thursday, February 03, 2011

Blockbuster Closing Last Two Memphis Storefronts

By Andy Meek

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In a matter of days, Memphians will no longer be able to visit a store and make it a Blockbuster night.

Every remaining Blockbuster store in Memphis is either closing or planning to close, signaling the end of the video rental chain's days in Memphis, the dominance of order-by-mail alternatives like Netflix and the convenience of kiosks like Redboxes.

Several Blockbuster stores are finishing liquidation sales of their remaining inventory. The two remaining stores in Memphis were Blockbusters on Union Ave. and off Stage Rd. in Bartlett.

The Union Ave. store's closure was made official Wednesday, and while the Bartlett-area store was still renting DVDs Wednesday night, more than one employee there said that store also is being closed at an unspecified date.

The stores in Memphis have been operated by a franchise group, Southern Stores Inc. Blockbuster Inc. filed for bankruptcy in September.

The departure of the rental giant's name from Memphis will leave the city with few options where consumers can visit a physical store to rent a movie.

Remaining options include Hastings Entertainment in Cordova; The Movie & Pizza Co. restaurant and video store combo in Harbor Town; Black Lodge Video in Midtown; and Redbox kiosks.

An employee at the Bartlett Blockbuster said Blockbuster also has a few video rental kiosks in Memphis.

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RECORD TOTALS DAY WEEK YEAR
PROPERTY SALES 72 206 16,619
MORTGAGES 84 228 21,660
FORECLOSURE NOTICES 21 56 4,322
BUILDING PERMITS 0 209 39,587
BANKRUPTCIES 73 222 15,764
BUSINESS LICENSES 23 51 5,542
UTILITY CONNECTIONS 86 287 23,860
MARRIAGE LICENSES 21 72 5,107

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