Case Detail

Case Summary

Blockbuster Video

Case Number: 5-204-259, Year Published: 2004

HBS Number: KEL039

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Authors: James Dana

Key Concepts

Competitive Strategy, Channel Coordination, Reputation, Service Level, Inventory Management, Competitive Advantage


This case asks why Blockbuster has a competitive advantage in video retailing. The case details both Blockbusters' use of revenue sharing contracts with movie studios to coordinate the vertical chain and Blockbuster’s “Go Home Happy” marketing campaign. The case challenges the student to understand how revenue sharing contracts, which are imitable and sometimes used by Blockbuster's competitors, can nevertheless be a key part of Blockbuster’s advantage.

Number of Pages: 17

Extended Case Information

Teaching Areas: Economics, Operations, Strategy

Teaching Note Available: Yes

Geographic: US

Industry: Entertainment

Organization Name: Blockbuster

Organization Department: Corporate Strategy

Organization Size: Large

Decision Maker Position: CEO

Decision Maker Gender: Male

Year of Case: 1999