The video clubs resisting Netflix's dominance

Although they were very profitable businesses just a decade ago, the emergence of content platforms is in stream, like Netflix or HBO, ended up shutting down hundreds of video stores across Spain. However, there are still some companies of this type that survive and bet on a Alternative offer to large productions.

Specific, only 300 video clubs have managed to hold their own against the big multinationals of audiovisual content. One of them is “Back to the past”, a store in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria dedicated to selling DVDs, Blu Rays, vinyl and collectibles for the most romantic cinema. “We want our children to continue our cinematic tendencies,” explains one of the entrepreneurs behind the project in a report by El País.

While few in number, video rental stores resist it boom from Netflix or HBO have managed to become profitable companies thanks to demand of the specialized public. “I offer 46,000 films and a lot of them are not on platforms. I think I’m doing a job protecting these films and recommending them. People show me every day,” explains a Barcelona entrepreneur in the industry in the report.

The success of the business model is based on the replication of subscription model of the large multinationals but adding the exclusive component to its catalog and the personalized recommendations. “We work with a flat rate, you can rent whatever you want for 8.95 euros. We are cheaper than everyone else and we recommend with knowledge,” he explains.

It is precisely this personal component that is the big difference between Spanish video clubs and the big platforms that dominate the market. For entrepreneurs in the sector, companies in stream They base all their recommendations on an algorithm that does not always offer their customers the most interesting content, but only “sneaks in” the great productions of the respective company. “You are obliged to see what the company wants to show you, you have no autonomy: they border on you, they close your taste. I have 50,000 titles here, neither Netflix nor HBO come together in my catalog,” they explain.

Filmin, a more convincing alternative for the video store sector

Within the catalog of content platforms in stream, the Spanish filmmaker seems to be an alternative more compelling for video store owners to allow cinema to coexist in physical and digital media. “It has more quality content for now, although since they don’t produce, they have things that already exist,” they explain to El País.

The company, which achieved a turnover of 14.4 million euros in 2020, started its activities in 2007 when Juan Carlos Tous, James Ripoll Y Jose Antonio de Luna They bought and sold movies, more specifically, in video stores.

At that time, 350 million films were illegally downloaded in Spain, with an estimated damage to the sector of 800 million euros. According to them, the market really started to emerge when the majors, Hollywood studios saw an opportunity to do business and began marketing their products and fighting piracy. “We’ve been selling the same films in different formats for thirty years. Now touch those stream‘ they affirmed in a recent interview entrepreneur.

One of Filmin’s strengths – and one of the great coincidences among the few video stores that resist in Spain – is its catalogue, which from the start has focused on independent and European cinema and represents 65% of its offer. “From the start, we wanted to focus on this type of content because we knew there would be other companies coming up in the future dedicated to a more general product,” concludes De Luna.

Filmin, management, HBO, legacy companies, Netflix, streaming, video stores