Hi-Def Consumer Spending Up 58 Percent Over Same Quarter Last Year


Blu-ray-enabled households now total 33.5 million, with consumer spending on the high-definition packaged-media format up 58 percent in the quarter, compared with the same period last year. The surge is due in part to a 60 percent jump in sales of catalog Blu-ray releases, led by Star Wars, Citizen Kane, Scarface and The Big Lebowski, among others.

Electronic sellthrough of new-release movies increased 13 percent in the quarter.

Overall, sellthrough for DVD and Blu-ray movies declined 4 percent to more than $1.7 billion, compared with $1.8 billion last year. When combined with electronic sellthough, sales of movies dropped less than 3 percent from the same period last year.

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In addition to electronic sellthrough, transactional video-on-demand increased nearly 5 percent to $419 million, compared with $400 million last year. Subscription streaming revenue topped $255 million.

Traditional brick-and-mortar video store rental revenue dropped more than 28 percent to $353 million from $495 million last year. It marks the first time that transactional VOD revenue surpassed traditional video store rental revenue. At the same time, subscription rental of DVD/Blu-ray increased nearly 5 percent to $607 million from $579 million. Kiosk revenue, which includes Redbox and Blockbuster Express, surged 23.3 percent to $414 million, compared with $335 million last year.

Total rental revenue, excluding VOD, declined 2.4 percent to $1.37 billion from $1.4 billion. With VOD, total rental revenue declined less than 1 percent to $1.79 billion from $1.8 billion.

Heading into the all-important fourth quarter, the DEG is confident that theatrical blockbusters entering the retail channel, including Captain America: The First Avenger, Cars 2, Cowboys & Aliens, The Hangover Part II, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows — Part 2, The Help, Kung Fu Panda 2, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, The Smurfs and Water for Elephants, will continue the positive trend into 2012.

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