Sad day as a leading photo retailer hits hard times!
Today Jessops announced that they are in administration affecting 192 stores and around 2,000 staff. Jessops are one of the UK's largest retailers of photographic equipment with a well known brand since 1935.
The main cause of this demise is said to be increasing competition from supermarkets and internet retailers. Similarly, many folk are now opting to use the cameras on their smartphones rather than buying a standalone camera.
I have never used Jessops as I always found their prices to be highly "non" competitive. Even before the mad internet rush. Before the store in Weymouth closed down a year or so ago, I was amazed at the price of even a simple accessory like rechargeable batteries. I found them 3 times cheaper in Boots (high street, not online)!
Coupled with the fact that Jessops never held any real stock that I would want to buy as a professional. Only low end, consumer kit and cheap, own brand stock, I feel they never covered enough of the market.
Future of Jessops
I would love to have seen them re-brand whilst holding more exciting stock such as Pocket Wizards. Proper studio gear, more accessories and decently priced media for example. I would happily support my local stores and shop there rather than go online. I guess with high rents meaning higher prices, they could never compete with their online counterparts.
Even their website is unavailable for purchasing with the current notice:
"Please note that the Jessops website will not currently process orders however you are able to read product descriptions, customer reviews and watch videos."
Rob Hunt, the joint administrator and partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers is hopeful that some store may be saved. But he said it was inevitable that many will close. You can read more over at the BBC News website: Jessops go into administration