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Redbox Instant: Original Content Inevitable for Us, Too

CEO Shawn Strickland Said Family-Oriented Programming Would be Most Likely Genre

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A move towards developing original content seems inevitable for Redbox Instant.

While the new streaming service from Redbox and Verizon currently only offers movies to stream or rent, its CEO Shawn Strickland said Redbox Instant will likely make a foray into offering original content in the future.

"I don't see how you can avoid having original content," Mr. Strickland said speaking at Advertising Age's digital conference taking place in New York City this week.

Shawn Strickland, CEO of RedBox Instant, speaks with Ad Age editor-at-large Simon Dumenco about how his company is positioning itself in a market dominated by Netflix at the Ad Age Digital Conference Wednesday, April 17, 2013, in New York.
Shawn Strickland, CEO of RedBox Instant, speaks with Ad Age editor-at-large Simon Dumenco about how his company is positioning itself in a market dominated by Netflix at the Ad Age Digital Conference Wednesday, April 17, 2013, in New York. Credit: Photo by Patrick Butler

If Redbox Instant were to use the same strategy that rival platforms like Netflix use in choosing what sort of original content to develop -- evaluating which actors and genres are most popular with their audience -- it would likely zero-in on family-friendly content, Mr. Strickland said.

"Kevin James is a rock star at kiosks," he said, noting that actor Mr. James typically stars in movies the whole family can enjoy. "This is one area from a programming perspective we can look at and see how we can fit there and fill a void."

Although originals are coming down the line, Redbox Instant, which had its full roll out in March, doesn't expect it will happen in the near-term. Mr. Strickland said the service first needs to hone in on its audience and doesn't believe launching a "House of Cards" type show will help in doing that.

Instead, Mr. Strickland and his team are figuring out how to marry Redbox and Verizon to market the service to consumers, who he said are not those already streaming 100% of the time.

The target Redbox Instant consumer are those that are still primarily DVD users, a medium he says is still vibrant, and introduce them to streaming.

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