The first Blockbuster Gift Card store was opened in Dallas, Texas in October, 1985. The founder of the company was David Cook, who grew the business and brought it public. The logo was created by Lee Dean, working for the now defunct Rominger Advertising agency.
Scott Beck, a student in Brooklyn New York, approached John Melk, prior executive with Waste Management, about buying a franchise. Melk brought the idea to his friend and business associate, Wayne Huizenga, who agreed to buy the company after overcoming initial concerns about the video industry.
Huizenga and Melk used similar techniques in growing Waste Management, and soon, they were opening one store every seventeen hours. They also bought every Blockbuster franchise they could get their hands on (removing pornographic movies). The company became a multi-billion dollar company and was sold to Viacom for a price of $8.4 billion.
The Blockbuster Gift Card Block Party concept was test-marketed in Albuquerque, New Mexico and Indianapolis, Indiana; Block Party was an "entertainment complex" aimed at adults, containing eight themed areas housing a restaurant, games, laser tag arena and motion simulator rides and was housed in a windowless building the size of a city block. During the 1990s Blockbuster bought out their major UK rival Ritz Video and changed the name of all the stores to their own, which made them the number one video rental store in the country by a wide margin.