Reel closure confirmed
Hollywood Entertainment have officially confirmed that they are to close the retail side of the Reel.com web site. In a statement released earlier today, the companies CEO Mark Wattles said "Reel.com has built an excellent web-site for movie buyers and those interested in movie content. Revenue, customer traffic and customer satisfaction have all been very strong. Unfortunately the business model of rapid customer acquisition required large losses and significant cash funding. As a result of the major declines in the value of publicly traded e-commerce companies, we have been unable to obtain outside financing for Reel and do not believe it is in the best interests of Hollywood's banks, bondholders and shareholders to continue funding Reel from Hollywood's strong video store cash flow. Despite significant customer enthusiasm, we cannot sustain this business."
According to the statement released to the press, all pre-orders placed through Reel will be fulfilled by another on-line retailer - Buy.com. However, as has already been noted, Buy do not ship internationally - quite where this leaves UK customers who have placed pre-orders is unknown. I am currently making enquiries but it is proving difficult to get any sort of straight answer from Reel themselves.
Further news will be posted here as we get it.