Camera chain Jessops shuts all its stores
by business editor Trevor Sturgess
The collapsed photography chain Jessops is to close all its
stores - including six in Kent.
The administrator says it's apparent the retailer can't continue
to trade, and all 187 branches will be shut for good this
That will mean the loss of 37 jobs across the county.
PricewaterhouseCoopers was appointed administrator.
The UK's only nationwide specialist camera chain has around 200
outlets - including Ashford, Bluewater, two
in Canterbury, Tonbridge and Maidstone - and employs
around 2,000 people.
Like Comet, the electrical giant that went out of business
before Christmas with the loss of 6,000 jobs, Jessops has faced
stiff online competition.
Sales of conventional cameras have also been hit by the boom in
mobile camera phones.
The chain has been in financial trouble for some time. In 2009,
HSBC rescued the ailing business by taking a 50% stake in exchange
for writing off debts of more than £30 million.
Frank Jessop opened his first shop in 1935 in Leicester where
the Jessop Group is still based.
Rob Hunt, joint administrator for PricewaterhouseCoopers, said:
"This is an extremely sad day for Jessops and its employees."
Stock will be returned to a central warehouse rather than going
on a sale, but returns will no longer be accepted from
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