Tuesday, May 31, 2016

MovieStop Putting An End to Its Business

MovieStop to shutter all stores
MovieStop, a chain of "Buy Sell Trade" movies and related materials, is closing all of its stores nationwide. MovieStop is headquartered in an office park on Cobb International Boulevard in Kennesaw.   

MovieStop, which was launched as a stand-alone brand by GameStop in 2004, grew to nearly 50 locations before being spun  off in 2012.  In November 2014, Draw Another Circle LLC, a company controlled by  entrepreneur Joel Weinshanker, purchased MovieStop. Weinshanker is also the founder & chairman of National Entertainment Collectibles Association Inc. (NECA) while Draw Another Circle LLC, of which he is the CEO, also owns Hastings, a business similar to MovieStop.  At the time of the deal, Weinshanker planned to realize synergies (and savings) in merging the operations of the Hastings and MovieStop brands.

Many GameStop and MovieStop locations were located within close proximity of each other in the same or nearby centers. 


MovieStop was similar in some ways to Blockbuster Video, another failed business, but sold media, rather than renting it.  MovieStop also tried to differentiate themselves and generate incremental revenue by launching a gift card trade in program in 2014.  Acceptable gift cards, which required a minimum $5 balance, had to be from national brands (think Best Buy and McDonald's) and were redeemable for a percentage of their dollar value.  Similar to Book Nook and CD Warehouse, MovieStop offered either store credit, from 60% to 90% of a card’s value, or cash payouts at about 15% lower. Strangely, MovieStop did not resell the cards in store but instead sold them to a third-party company.


I visited the Mall of Georgia location this past weekend and one thing that struck me was the store's incredibly high inventory levels of certain used movies.  While used media can be a lucrative business, one must be very selective with what they purchase so is not to be left sitting with tremendous inventory.  I observed over a dozen used copies of "Won't Back Down," a 2012 film with a 33% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and dozens of copies of various "Spiderman" films. There were also stockpiles of assorted other films and TV series leading me to guess that poor judgement in purchasing may have been contributed to the retailer's failure.  


Current Atlanta area MovieStop locations include those on Pleasant Hill Road in Duluth, Ernest Barrett Parkway in Kennesaw and Woodward Crossing Boulevard in Buford.

The Buford location relocated from another space in Mall of Georgia Crossing in 2013 to accommodate the opening of Burger 21.    

The Kennesaw location is likely the most interesting as it could provide a prime location to a growing or new to market restaurant or retailer, of which there are many.  MovieStop occupies a converted classic freestanding Pier 1 Imports building.  


Former MovieStop locations in Georgia include one on Peachtree Parkway in The Collection at Forsyth, Carmia Drive near Camp Creek Marketplace and another on Jimmy Lee Smith Parkway in Hiram.  The MovieStop in Hiram was a converted Blockbuster / Game Rush and has since been demolished and rebuilt as a Pollo Tropical restaurant.  

MovieStop locations are currently liquidating all existing inventory with savings of 20-40%.  All stores are expected to close by July 9th.   Stores in Buford and Duluth will reportedly be closed by July 5th.


Are you surprised by the closure of MovieStop?  If you live near one of the closing stores, what would you like to see open in its place?  Where do you purchase your media, or do you purchase it?

Please share your thoughts below. 

16 comments:

Greenwave said...

Definitely going to make a trip to Kennsesaw soon. They might have 4K movies on sale.

Coolio said...

Should be seeing one of these articles for redbox pretty soon... maybe within one year from now

Anonymous said...

They're still pulling in nearly $2 billion in rentals each year Coolio. So I doubt it.

Grant Goggans said...

You know, I thought something was up about a month ago when I saw only a single Law & Order set on the shelf. Usually the used stores have 12 or 13 different ones to select.

Anonymous said...

The store I shop at started going downhill after they stopped focusing on movies and started putting all that other junk in the store. My guess is that Hastings screwed up Movie Stop and is now closing them because they cant fix the problems they caused. Sad to see a great store go away.

Unknown said...

I work at moviestop. If we had not been bought by Hastings, who are now filing fot bankruptcy, we would probably not be going out of business. It has nothing to do with how many copies of spiderman we have. Don't assume that and post it as though it is fact.

Unknown said...

I work at moviestop. If we had not been bought by Hastings, who are now filing fot bankruptcy, we would probably not be going out of business. It has nothing to do with how many copies of spiderman we have. Don't assume that and post it as though it is fact.

Anonymous said...

I work at moviestop. We are closing because Hastings made bad decisions and are now filing for bankruptcy. It has nothing to do with how many copies of Spiderman are on the shelf. Don't post things that are just conjecture based on what you think you see as though they are facts.

Anonymous said...

I think Anonymous may be right. By pulling away from movies (books & music in Hastings) and focusing on "boutique" product they lost what made MovieStop and Hastings special. Now they look like every other mall store.

Not EVERYONE is online or wants to download. Some of us like to rent a video, or read an actual book, or pop a cd in the car.

Talal "Perez" Ghosheh said...

The specials are now buy 3 get 3 free on all used blu-ray and dvd. All blurays are 70% off of the marked price. I got about 600$ worth of blu rays for 75$ including a couple of new titles like Ride Along 2. Some movies in there I will admit I wont watch more than once or twice but for 2$ a blu ray you can't really beat it.

Maria Fritch said...

I bought a lot of movies from movie stop I love that place so much I wish they kept their business

Unknown said...

So sad

Anonymous said...

REALLY REALLY SAD. ... MOVIE STOP IS MY KIDS FAVORITE PLACE TO GO AND SPEND THEIR ALLOWENCE . THE STORE AND THE EMPLOYEES WILL BE MISSED.

Unknown said...

I agree 100%. After all the figures, backpacks, novelty items, etc. started coming in we guessed it would be about a year before they closed their doors. We were a little off but Moviestop was great when it focused on.. well.. Movies.

Alejandro Santiago said...

Yep. That's me. I hated when they started adding all the non sense in their stores.

Alejandro Santiago said...

I agree 100%. After all the figures, backpacks, novelty items, etc. started coming in we guessed it would be about a year before they closed their doors. We were a little off but Moviestop was great when it focused on.. well.. Movies.