Despite their stores being in a shambles--literally--the folks at Sears have decided to move into the digital home entertainment business. Go figure.
"Sears, has officially launched its online movie download service, Alphaline Entertainment http://alphaline.roxionow.com. The new service enables Sears and Kmart customers to download entertainment online, including new movies on the same day they are released on DVD and Blu-ray Disc," read the press release that hit yesterday.
Just last week, The New York Times ran a piece about how the company, five years after its merger with Kmart, was a mess.
"(Sears') long-term strategy remains murky, analysts say. Sears Holdings is primarily a physical retailer, and many of its 2,200 stores in the United States are run-down and in undesirable locations," read the Times' report.
But the story did hint at this development, noting that under the leadership of chairman Edward L. Lampert, they were "emphasizing online shopping, mobile apps and an Amazon.com-like marketplace with other vendors, along with heavy promotions in stores"
Though the prices for movie purchases are no great shakes, the rental rates are competitive with other streaming services. And hey, a crusty old dump like Sears is to be commended for trying to move into the 21st Century.
But, man, that name--Alphaline--is terrible.