Verizon and Redbox have announced this morning that they plan on bringing a Netflix competitor to market in 2012 via a joint venture between the two companies. Verizon will be the majority shareholder in the joint venture with a 65% ownership stake to Redbox’s 35%.
The service would provide both physical media (DVDs and Blu-Rays) and online streaming video to subscribers, though whether these would be lumped together or sold as separate packages (a la Netflix) has not yet been announced.
Also missing from this morning’s press release is any word on pricing. The cheapest physical plus streaming option on Netflix is $16 per month, and we don’t expect the Verizon-Redbox offering to differ much from that number. Verizon-Redbox will offer support for mobile devices, though whether or not non-Verizon branded devices will be able to get in on the action remains to be seen.
Though the announcement certainly brings up more questions than it answers, one thing’s for sure: by the end of the year, consumers will have yet another choice when it comes to their video media consumption. We’ll bring you more details of the Verizon-Redbox joint venture as new information becomes available.Show Press Release
Verizon and Coinstar’s Redbox Form Joint Venture to Create New Consumer Choice for Video Entertainment
Joint Venture Will Offer the Best of Both Worlds – Physical and Digital – to All Consumers Nationwide
NEW YORK, Feb. 6, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Verizon and Coinstar, Inc. today announced the formation of a joint venture that will create a new choice for quality- and value-conscious consumers seeking a simple and affordable way to access the video entertainment they crave. The venture’s services will offer all of the convenience, simplicity and value of Redbox® new release DVD and Blu-ray Disc® rentals combined with a new content-rich video on-demand streaming and download service from Verizon.
The joint venture plans to introduce the product portfolio in the second half of 2012. It will offer subscription services and more in an easy-to-use, flexible and affordable service that will allow all consumers across the U.S. to enjoy the new and popular entertainment they want, whenever they choose, using the media and devices they prefer. Additional brand and product information will be revealed in the coming months.
“When you consider the core elements the parties bring to this venture – our powerful brands; our national rental kiosk footprint; our anytime, anywhere network presence; and our mutual commitment to customer-focused innovation – it’s clear that Verizon and Redbox are a powerful entertainment team,” said Bob Mudge, president of Verizon consumer and mass business markets.
“Consumers rely on Redbox for the latest new release movies at a great value, and our joint venture with Verizon will enable us to bring them even more value by offering expanded content offerings and greater flexibility for how and when they enjoy entertainment,” said Paul Davis, chief executive officer of Coinstar, Inc. “This alliance is the result of a deliberate and strategic process to identify a partner who shares our commitment to delivering innovative solutions to consumers. We look forward to rolling out the shared benefits this venture will bring to consumers, retailers, and shareholders.”
This venture between Verizon and Redbox will create the kind of national multi-platform product that customers are demanding from video entertainment service providers. It will leverage Verizon’s industry-wide relationships with entertainment content providers, its advanced cloud computing technologies and state-of-the-art IP network infrastructure to distribute video on-demand content to its customers.
“The joint venture will combine the accessibility and value of Redbox with Verizon’s vision for a borderless lifestyle – where consumers easily accomplish what they want or need to do, on their terms, through the power of the network,” said Mudge. “Together, we are erasing old technology boundaries, freeing people to spontaneously enjoy the entertainment they want, whenever they choose, using the devices and media they prefer, at home or away.”
By offering instantly available online and mobile content with immediate access to physical media through rental kiosks, Verizon and Redbox will be uniquely positioned to deliver the best of both worlds – digital and physical – to consumers across the country.
The joint venture is a limited liability company with Verizon holding a 65 percent ownership share and Redbox holding a 35 percent ownership share at the outset.