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US Q3 video rentals up 9.9% thanks to Blu-ray, kiosk growth

US consumer spending on rentals of DVDs and Blu-ray discs jumped 9.9% in the third quarter 2009 over the same period last year, bringing in $1.6 billion, according to Rentrak. The numbers are fueled by healthy inroads of Blu-ray and the growing popularity of video kiosks.

Consumers spent more than $111 million renting Blu-ray discs through bricks-and-mortar and online outlets in the third quarter, 44.5% more than a year earlier. Year-to-date Blu-ray rentals are up 53.8% to $313 million, according to Rentrak figures reported in Video Business.

As for DVD, the Digital Entertainment Group (DEG) estimates that, while overall US retail sales fell 13.5% to $5.4 billion during the first half of 2009, DVD rentals rose by 8.3% to $3.4 billion during the same period. The Rentrak figures, point to overall rental spending up 8.2%, to $5 billion, for the 12 months to September.

While representing only 14% of all rentals, Video Business reports that revenue from the kiosk channel is growing fast – more than 120% this year – in large part owing to Redbox’s 17,000 machines.

Digital sales and rentals from services like Inc. and Apple Inc.'s iTunes rose 21% to $968 million, according the DEG.

Story filed 12.10.09

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