Video rental stores — they still exist in North America.
Earlier this summer, Heather and I drove down to Santa Fe, New Mexico for a short break. We decided to see a movie in the middle of the day, just because we could. Nice.
The movie theater was in a dying mall. And even more dying than the mall was a Hastings store, providing books, music — and video rentals. I won’t launch into why CDs are dying, bookstores are dying, and streaming video is the way to see a movie.
But I will talk about optimism. The owner of that mall — and even more so — the owner of Hastings — should cut their losses and sell now. It will be a loss to the community when they leave. If the owners can afford to provide that valuable service at a loss, more power to them. But how much do they really value providing that service?
Similarly, our local grocery store had a space with a local coffee shop and then a frozen yogurt stand. I knew from the moment they opened each little business that they were doomed to fail. Finally, they put in a Starbucks, and it seems to be doing well. That multinational chain has the resources to make a really nice shop — as well as huge brand recognition. The smaller coffee chain and the yogurt chain (or independent business owner) did not.
The final tale in this listing of doomed businesses is a new independent drive-through coffee shop on Broadway in Englewood, Colorado. The owners decided to build on the south-bound side of the street. Most people commuting to work from suburbia to downtown drive the other direction. When do people buy coffee? Morning, mostly. This small business will fail, sadly.