Redbox begins the brainchild of McDonald's® Ventures, LLC. It's seen as a way to make something in customers' lives a little easier.
They test two concepts in the Washington, D.C. area: Tik Tok Easy Shop and Tik Tok DVD Shop.
Tik Tok Easy Shop
A convenience store in the shape of a vending machine, selling more than 200 things, from milk to shampoo.
Tik Tok DVD Shop
A DVD rental kiosk (sound familiar?)
The winner is Tik Tok DVD Shop, and locations start popping up in Washington and Las Vegas under a new name: Redbox.
The team experiments with selection, location, price and other details. The winning formula: focus on new releases, don't make anyone buy a membership, and make the price as low as it'll go.
People are starting to talk about Redbox. Since most boxes are at McDonald's, headlines say things like, "Would you like a DVD with your fries?" and "Order Your Big Mac and DVD to Go."
Redbox starts counting its locations by the hundreds instead of the handfuls. It expands to over 800 McDonald's restaurants across five more cities: Baltimore, Houston, Salt Lake City, St. Louis and Minneapolis/St. Paul.
November of 2005
Coinstar, Inc. – an expert at placing kiosks in all sorts of convenient spots – buys a piece of Redbox.
Redbox becomes a separate company and starts expanding outside of McDonald's restaurants – and quickly.
Redbox rolls out to grocery stores, convenience stores, drug stores and mass-merchant spots.
Customers can start reserving their movies online, ahead of time, at www.redbox.com.
Redbox rents its 38 millionth movie, making it the fifth-largest movie rental company in the country.
With more and more locations popping up in their neighborhoods, customers are loving Redbox for its convenience (not to mention its low prices).
Redbox doubles its locations, helping it reach the 200-million-rental mark by September.
Redbox starts fighting for America's right to get entertainment for cheap. Most of the major movie studios team up with them to rent out their movies for a low daily price, the same day they're released everywhere else or 28 days after.
Redbox adds more than 7,000 locations and rents its 500 millionth disc. Of every 100 DVDs that America rents, 17 are from Redbox.
Coinstar buys the remaining stake of Redbox. Convenience-lovers everywhere rejoice.
Redbox rents its 1 billionth disc, starts renting out Blu-ray™ Discs, begins testing video games, and rents out 30 percent of America's DVDs. Which makes it no surprise when Advertising Age names it one of America's Hottest Brands.
Video-game rentals go national, making Redbox America's official destination for entertainment. Of every 100 DVDs that America rents, 37 percent are from Redbox – making it the country's most popular place for physical movie rentals. 68% of the U.S. lives within a 5-minute drive of a box.
America has rented more than 2 billion discs from Redbox, across 31,500 locations. Millions of customers every week relax with a Redbox movie night.
Redbox is partnering with Verizon to bring people a new service for streaming movies, and it's just launched Redbox Tickets in Philadelphia.
In the past 10 years, Redbox has grown from a little experiment to America's #1 source for entertainment – and the most exciting stuff is still to come.