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Forum News Service, Published November 06 2013

Bemidji Blockbuster to be last in Minnesota

BEMIDJI, Minn. - Bemidji’s Blockbuster video store will be the last location in Minnesota early next year as hundreds of Blockbusters close across the country, officials confirmed Wednesday.

The store, owned and operated by North Central Management Group, is a franchise location, saving it from the fate of 300 corporate-owned Blockbusters in the U.S. that parent company Dish Network will close.

“There is no plan at this point to close or do anything different than what we’ve been doing,” said Kevin Seeger, North Central general manager.

The Bemidji location will be the last remaining Blockbuster store in Minnesota after the January closings, Dish spokesman John Hall said.

Dish Network announced Wednesday that it would end its by-mail video distribution service as well as shutter its retail stores and distribution centers. Dish plans to lay off as many as 2,800 employees.

But Seeger said North Central’s store operations in Bemidji and Grand Forks, N.D., are relatively independent, except for software and other support services.