Blockbuster bleeds $78 million before Dish Network buyout

Blockbuster has become quite familiar with posting monthly financial losses. A new report outlining the company’s fiscal performance in the weeks leading up to its $320 million acquisition by Dish Network did nothing to change that trend.

Blockbuster bleeds  million before Dish Network buyout

Home Media Magazine reported on Thursday that Blockbuster lost $78 million between April 4th and May 1st, bringing the company’s total 2011 losses up to that date to a whopping $192 million. The site also pointed out that the troubled company lost $581 million when it was acquired by Dish, earning only $120 million in the sale.

Blockbuster filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection last September, citing more than $1 billion in debt. Shortly after, the company refocused its efforts toward its Blockbuster Express rental kiosks in an attempt to take shares away from market leader Redbox. Even that move has proven difficult, though not just due to Redbox’s dominance.

In February, Blockbuster Express owner NCR announced it would launch 3,000 new kiosks by the end of 2011. Following the buyout in April, however, Dish informed NCR to cease using the Blockbuster name on its kiosks. NCR subsequently sued Dish earlier this week over the request, calling it “invalid and unenforceable.”

Lawsuit notwithstanding, Blockbuster is trying to win back customers who abandoned the company for alternatives such as Netflix and appeal to deal seekers with a one-two punch at stores across the U.S.: a new summer promotion offering free rentals, and cheaper prices.

Considering the company may only keep a few hundred locations open when all is said and done, that effort could be in vain.

One last bastion of hope for the company is the online streaming movie space.

Incoming Dish CEO Joseph Clayton has said that he wants to see a “new model” which implements Blockbuster and other acquired businesses at some point in the future, but was light on details.

The statement came not long after Charles Ergen, who recently announced he would be stepping down as Dish CEO, told investors he didn’t believe the company could directly compete with Netflix. Ergen described Netflix’s lead as “formidable and insurmountable.”

It’s unclear if Blockbuster can pull a comeback, but Dish’s backing certainly doesn’t hurt.