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What's up with Jessops?

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by IvorETower, Mar 2, 2020.

  1. IvorETower

    IvorETower Little Buttercup

    I Know that there were a few items in the press recently about them having issues with their "property" arm, but just looking around on their store locator, it appears that their Reading Store no longer exists, nor the Didcot shop-in-Sainsburys. In fact, the store locator now seems to have very few entries compared to a few months back.

    Can anyone confirm first-hand if they have indeed closed a number of their stores? I've tried "ggogling" but cannot see anything that confirms store closures have taken place after the latest "crisis" hit the headlines.... sad times for our hobby :-(
  2. spinno

    spinno Well-Known Member

    Nottingham was still there a week ago
  3. Bazarchie

    Bazarchie Well-Known Member

    No idea if the CVA was a success, I cannot find any details on Google.
  4. GeoffR

    GeoffR Well-Known Member

    The website shows 24 locations. I am afraid they wouldn’t be able to maintain that many on my custom, I haven’t bought anything from Jessops for at least five years.
  5. Bazarchie

    Bazarchie Well-Known Member

    Their website no longer lists Reading as an outlet.
  6. IvorETower

    IvorETower Little Buttercup

    I know, that's what prompted this thread. I can't do a "click and collect" from a store that no longer appears on the list of stores from which you can collect!
  7. RovingMike

    RovingMike Crucifixion's a doddle...

  8. nimbus

    nimbus Well-Known Member

    In honesty I always had my doubts about the viability of a relaunched Jessops in the modern era. The original incarnation had grown too quickly and was not really suited to the internet age, a time when much was altering rapidly, too many stores too close together for a start, along with a host of other shortcomings. Now the competition as we know is largely online, running retail premises in multiple locations selling relatively small goods that are easily sent from a warehouse to a buyer results in costly overheads leading to minuscule margins. I don't recall buying anything much from the nearest Jessops store, which is about 35 minutes drive, or about 80-90 minutes on public transport, it doesn't really have a lot to offer, given that LCE have their northernmost branch much closer. Unfortunately the last local independent is closing at the end of the month, unless there is an unlikely reprieve, the owner is retiring.

    Jessops might have had a slightly better chance with somebody who was a photographer as well as a businessman at the top, it helps to understand your customers from their position imho.
  9. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    The original incarnation was fine. As I remember it, it was loaded with debt by private equity who took the cash then sold an unviable business back to the management who were trying to save the jobs.
  10. RovingMike

    RovingMike Crucifixion's a doddle...

    You could be right, but I think the history of business disasters is littered with people who were distracted from making objective judgments by being enthusiasts for whatever it was. Jamie Oliver possibly being only the latest.
    Brian likes this.
  11. GeoffR

    GeoffR Well-Known Member

    I think you have a point there Mike, the man or woman at the top doesn't have to be a photographer but they do have to employ someone who has the knowledge and they have to listen to what that person says. I am not sure that having a pilot at the top has always been good for IAG for example.

    Jessops have never really thrilled me with their stores, the camera shops I have most enjoyed visiting have had obscure used items in the window and bags of knowledge of the products they sell. Most of them are no longer around, unfortunately, probably because they weren't shifting the stock fast enough. There are such shops, MrCad has a window full of interesting items (they are just around the corner from Grays). Jessops seem to have needed to order in things I wanted or to have displayed a general lack of interest, from the staff that is. Their prices aren't terribly competitive, I did a comparison of a few prices against Grays or Westminster and Grays came out cheaper!

    Additionally, they seem to have stores in expensive places too; Oxford Street when the competition is in The Strand (LCE), Pimlico (Grays), Riding House Street (Aperture) and Rathbone Place (Park Cameras). Why pay Oxford street rents when others are selling the same products, and used equipment, not far away at better prices? Doesn't make any sense to me.
  12. LesleySM

    LesleySM Well-Known Member

    The New Oxford Street branch recently closed down
  13. nimbus

    nimbus Well-Known Member

    The Jessops branch closest to where I live is in a large out of town shopping and entertainment complex, with rent to match. The LCE shop is in a fairly suburban but busy High Street with reasonable parking facilities and good public transport links, admittedly they did add it to their portfolio when the previous independent owner retired, they have not relocated it though.
  14. GeoffR

    GeoffR Well-Known Member

    Their web site shows a branch at 145 Oxford Street.
  15. Learning

    Learning Ethelred the Ill-Named

    Yes but I can't see Nottingham keeping two camera shops. If we are to lose one then I would prefer to lose Jessops rather than LCE.
  16. RovingMike

    RovingMike Crucifixion's a doddle...

    I think possibly a different business model. Oxford St is targeted at the tourists and moving closer to M&S might have been part of that.

    Agree about what makes the shop attractive to us. I loved Kingsleys in Tottenham Ct Rd, but they admitted the internet killed them. Ditto SRS in Rayners Lane, although Watford branch survives.
  17. GeoffR

    GeoffR Well-Known Member

    Strange you should say that, Kingsleys were the people I was thinking about, small trading area but huge stocks. SRS do a lot of business on-line now, I was there only last week.
  18. miked

    miked Well-Known Member

    Oooh, thank goodness, our grand-daughter is at the university there.
  19. IvorETower

    IvorETower Little Buttercup

    They had 2 branches just a few hundred yards apart; Oxford Street and New Oxford Street. Seemed ludicrous to me to have 2 so close together when other large thriving cities had none. I've had confirmation from them by email that the Reading store has indeed closed. It was in the Oracle Centre and quite possibly was another victim of high rent
  20. neilt3

    neilt3 Well-Known Member

    In Manchester we have three main shops that sell new gear .
    Jessops on Market at , LCE on Cross at and WEX in the old Calumet building off the Mancunian way .
    Going into the city centre is a real pain in the backside to me , and a last resort .
    Buying new I tend to go to WEX as I can drive there , park in their car park , get what I want and go .
    They have a good selection on display to make my choice with .
    With LCE they also sell used .
    I can look on their website to see if there's anything I want and reserve over the phone before going .
    I can use unused gear to swap or part exchange for new or used .
    It's a pain as going there takes half a day and a bus ride , but at least I know I'm getting what I want and won't have a wasted journey .

    As far as Jessops goes , I have no reason to even call in there , or look at their website .
    Buying new , WEX or online is easier without the hassel of walking into the city centre .
    They seem to have made the same mistake as their previous owners , opening lots of places in city centres with not a lot of incentive to go out of your way getting there .

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