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Iceland’s Largest Video Store to Close

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Iceland’s Largest Video Store to Close

Outside Laugarásvídeó store

A sign outside Laugarásvídeó advertising the store. Photo: Páll Stefánsson.

Laugarásvídeó, Iceland’s largest video store, located on Dalbraut in Reykjavík, is to close after 30 years of operation. The store is one of the last remaining video stores in the country.

Owner Gunnar Jósefsson told Iceland Review Online that one of the main reasons for his decision was that there has been a large decrease in the number of films released with Icelandic subtitles. “There used to be 30-50 films released per month but now it’s more like ten,” he said, adding that films being made available via the internet had also been a major reason for the closure. “You can’t compete with the internet,” he said. Gunnar also suggested that it was time for him to do something else with his life and said that he hadn’t taken a holiday in a very long time.

The indexation of loans in Iceland was also a factor, Gunnar stated. “Indexation also helped me,” he said wryly of the decision to close up shop.

The store’s inventory is for sale with most films going for ISK 600 (USD 4.50, EUR 4.25), and Blu-ray disks for ISK 1,000 (USD 7.60, EUR 7.11).

The store was destroyed by fire in 2009, but reopened again several months later.

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