Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment executives ring the opening bell at the Nasdaq in 2017

Redbox Owner Chicken Soup for the Soul Files for Bankruptcy

Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment (CSSE), the parent company of Redbox, has filed for bankruptcy following prolonged financial difficulties. The company, known for its iconic red DVD rental kiosks, disclosed nearly $1 billion in debt in a recent filing. Among its creditors are major entertainment companies such as the BBC and Sony Pictures, as well as retailers like Walmart and Walgreens.

CSSE accumulated approximately $325 million in debt after acquiring Redbox in 2022 from Apollo Global Management. The acquisition was part of a strategy to transform the company into an entertainment conglomerate by integrating the DVD rental business with its free streaming services, including Crackle, which was formerly owned by Sony. However, this plan faltered due to the decline in physical DVD rentals and the impact of dual Hollywood strikes that stalled new content production. This trend even led rival Netflix to abandon its DVD rental business last year.

According to Deadline, Redbox employees faced a week without pay, and their medical benefits were suspended. Filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy could provide a path to resolving these issues, pending approval by a court in Delaware.

CSSE’s publishing division, famous for its “Chicken Soup for the Soul” self-help books, is not affected by the bankruptcy of its entertainment unit.

Redbox operates around 34,000 kiosks across the United States, primarily in grocery and drug stores. Since its inception in 2002, Redbox has rented out over one billion discs at prices lower than cable alternatives, according to the company’s website.

CSSE has declined to comment on the bankruptcy filing.

Oh hi there 👋
It’s nice to meet you.

Sign up to receive awesome content in your inbox, every week.

We don’t spam!

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *