WDAY: The News Leader

Published January 14, 2013, 09:31 PM

Red Box is taking over local video stores in the metro

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) -- Most of you are renting movies in a different way than you did just 5 years ago.

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) -- Most of you are renting movies in a different way than you did just 5 years ago.

One of the reasons is the nationwide phenomenon called Red Box. It's quickly making your local video stores obsolete.

This red box rage is catching millions across the country. Every second, there are 40 movies rented at a red box.

Lora Conn/Red Box customer: "it's good, it's cheap."

This vending machine/video store has caught on with nearly everyone who has used it.

Nick Selle/Red Box customer: "I only need a movie for a night so it's perfect."

Ian: "I've had customers come up to me, they'll rent a movie in Fargo, go to New York or Massachusetts on business and return it there when you get off the plane."

Meet Ian Godfrey, the only Red Box employee in the metro, he covers all 25 kiosks.

Ian: "people come up to me and say so you're the red box guy we thought magic little fairy keebler elves did the job."

In the 21st century business world it's the next best thing to magic. The company is booming, along with minimal overhead costs, all of its advertising is done by word of mouth and social media i.e., facebook, twitter and its app, which allows people to pick a movie and kiosk and it's there waiting.

As far as controlling the market. Since Red Box showed up here 5 years ago, there has not been one new video store opened.

In that time multiple rental stores have closed, including take 2 video that used to be where noodles and company is. Several others have downsized, this October Video Vault cut its store in half, there's a red box in the Hornbachers next door.

And it has turned Ian into somewhat of a celebrity when he's on the job.

Ian: "kids want to see inside I've had a couple of kids you could have swore they were at Disney world meeting mickey."

Red Box pays stores like Hornbachers a commission per movie rented. For the store, it draws in traffic and they just pay the electricity for plugging the machine in. Also, Red box will soon launch a video streaming program, similar to netflix.