Leica hopes more photography enthusiasts will buy its cameras after striking a partnership deal with high-street chain Jessops.

Photographers will be able to buy Leica products at four Jessops stores, in a move that ties in with Leica UK’s plan to inspire more enthusiasts to use rangefinder cameras, as revealed in an interview with AP in August.

Jessops is now an official Leica dealer, which means Leica kit will be available at Jessops ‘Centre of Excellence’ stores in Reading, Birmingham, Glasgow and Oxford Street in London.

Leica Camera UK’s general manager Jason Heward said: ‘We are delighted to be working with Jessops. We share the same philosophy for creating destinations where photography enthusiasts can go for advice and inspiration.

‘A Jessops Centre of Excellence is somewhere for you to learn about photography, view photography and create your own images.

‘It is exciting for us to have our iconic products in these locations.

‘Their knowledge and passionate staff will help to bring Leica photography to a broader audience.’

Asked how long it has been since Jessops stocked Leica products, a Leica UK spokesperson said: ‘I have spoken to Jessops and there is a possibility Leica was stocked in Jessops in the 1990s.’

Yesterday, Jessops revealed its full financial results for the first time since being taken over by Dragons’ Den entrepreneur Peter Jones.

  • joe

    Who was denigrating any type of high end gear I do not know. Most of us are aware of Leica’s impeccable reputation as a manufacturer and innovator of photographic equipment, in particular,for me, their range of ‘glass’ .In addition, most photographers are also aware that a grounding in the principles of photography are a basic requirement to obtain the best from the camera no matter the cost. It is snobbery to start wetting the bed at the thought of Jessops, or God forbid, PC World or Argos selling the Leica brand. By the way Sir, Currys flagship stores already sell the M9.

  • foto2021

    It’s not about snobbery. It’s the exact opposite. The snobbery comes from people who absolutely “must” have help from autofocus, multiple program exposure modes, matrix metering and auto-everything else in order to take a picture. Those of us who use rangefinders want to cut the cr*p and concentrate on making our own creative decisions rather than leaving automated electronics to make them for us.

    All making an image needs is the simple, basic choices of ISO, shutter speed, sperture and focusing distance. It isn’t rocket science; there is absolutely no need to get electronics to make these decisions for you. Playing with toys is for children. How can you claim to be a photographer if you are unable to make these simple decisions for yourself?

    I have used Leica cameras professionally since 1973 alongside SLRs from Nikon, Canon, Pentax, Rollei and Hasselblad. I broke with Leica when the M8 was introduced but returned as soon as used M9 bodies became affordable. No need to research its strengths, I already knew and greatly valued them. The M8 certainly had its weaknesses but they were solved with the M9.

    My Leica M9 cost me £1900, used, with a 12 month warranty from a reputable dealer. My five lenses (one Leica, two Voigtlander, one Carl Zeiss, one MP Optical) cost in total about the same again. Nowhere near £5000 for a body. My Nikon D800 cost a lot more than the M9 and I have over £7000 worth of Nikon glass. Yet I always prefer using the Leica because it does not put electronics, weight and bulk in the way of picture taking.

    Alas, the perceived high cost of Leica equipment means that some people are ignorant of its abilities. Most photographers are happy to get the best out of the equipment they own, but there are a sad few who insist on denigrating expensive gear they do not understand and/or cannot afford. ‘Twas ever thus.

  • joe

    Ridiculous statement. Anybody that feels a need to spend £5000 on a camera body without researching it’s strengths ( and weaknesses ) is a fool. I hate this type of snobbery and the ‘downmarket chain’ of Jessops has most certainly introduced more people to photography than probably any other photographic store, high end or otherwise.

  • foto2021

    Leica isn’t a mass market product. It is a niche product which is best supported by specialist retailers who know and love the brand and understand its strengths. It should not be sold in downmarket chain stores such as Jessops.

    What next? Currys/PC World? Argos?

  • joe

    How about just making them more affordable Leica.