Video store remains open with new owner

March 28, 2014
By

HYDE SQ.—It’s not only movie zombies who come back from the dead. Beloved neighborhood video rental store the Video Underground has found a new owner and a new lease on life just weeks after tolling its death knell.

New owner Kevin Koppes bought the majority share of the Video Underground, located at 358 Centre St., last month. Previous majority owner Josiah Simmons will remain as a minority owner and employee. But the store will be looking for a new home.

“It’s almost hard to imagine The Video Underground without him at this point,” Koppes said.

Koppes is a JP resident and former Video Underground customer with no prior video-store experience. He told the Gazette that he is looking for a new location in JP as part of the “back-end restructuring” to keep the Video Underground in the black, but has not yet found anything.

“I’m committed to keeping the Video Underground in Jamaica Plain. I’ve met with several business and community leaders about where we might end up, and I’m confident we’ll have a new spot picked out soon on either Centre or South [streets],” he said.

Koppes said he intends to keep the Video Underground tradition alive with “new releases, rare and out-of-print movies, a massive catalog, and a knowledgeable staff, as well as a renewed focus on creating and maintain relationships with other local businesses, civic groups, and schools.”

“We also plan to broaden our reach into surrounding neighborhoods and the heart of Boston itself, ideally turning the Video Underground into a cultural destination that stands to benefit the entirety of Jamaica Plain,” he said.

And while Koppes admitted it was an ambitious plan, he also said, “We’re in really solid shape for three weeks in.”

The Video Underground’s website is thevideounderground.com.

New Video Underground owner Kevin Koppes behind the counter on March 19. (Gazette Photo by Rebeca Oliveira)

New Video Underground owner Kevin Koppes behind the counter on March 19. (Gazette Photo by Rebeca Oliveira)

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