Netflix to expand into Canada
Los Gatos, Calif. Netflix said Monday it will launch a Canadian service for streaming movies and TV episodes later this year. The expansion marks the first international venture for the company.
Starting this fall throughout Canada, Netflix will offer unlimited movies and TV episodes streamed instantly to TVs and computers for a monthly fee.
In addition to representing its international debut, Canada will also mark the first streaming-only service promoted by Netflix.
At the time of launch, the Netflix Canadian service will be available in English only, but the company said it expects to add French language capability over time.
Visa launches new payment card security initiative
On Wednesday, Visa Inc. launched a new payment card security initiative that the company said could eliminate the need for retailers and other organizations to store full, 16-digit credit and debit card numbers on their systems.
The move comes in response to long-standing pressure from the National Retail Federation, which maintains that merchants should not be required to store the information because of security risks.
Under the new initiative, Visa said it will push card issuers and acquiring banks to allow merchants to present truncated, disguised or otherwise masked card numbers for dispute resolution cases. Some permit this already, but the goal is to make the practice broader, said Eduardo Perez, head of global payment system security at Visa.
Visa said it plans to seek feedback from industry stakeholders on the challenges and issues involved in moving to a more secure payment industry model. After Visa reviews the feedback, it will decide whether to make the recommendations a mandated requirement.
West Marine sales rise 8.4% in 2Q
West Marine Inc. reported Thursday that its net revenues for the quarter ended July 3 were $233.4 million, an increase of 8.4% over the year-ago period.
Same-store sales jumped 9.4%.
According to the company, sales benefitted from warmer weather in the northeast. However, “in the southeast, we have been starting to feel the effects of the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico as boating activities are increasingly restricted,” said Geoff Eisenberg, CEO.
West Marine, a specialty retailer of boating supplies and accessories, operates 330 company-operated stores in 38 states, Puerto Rico and Canada, and two franchised stores in Turkey.