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News - 12 January 2013
Jessops in Queens Road

Jessops poleaxed by Comet

Along with 186 other branches, the Queens Road outlet of the camera retailer closed its doors on Friday after its suppliers, spooked by the demise of Comet, pulled the plug and refused to provide more stock.

Administrators closed the stores two days after being appointed and didn’t even bother with the usual liquidation firesale because suppliers, fearing default, had retained legal ownership of all the stock. In a panicked response to the collapse of the Comet chain before Christmas suppliers had started to demand terms so stringent that the ailing company could no longer comply.

ECONOMIC PARTNERSHIP COMMENT

It is a shame that Jessops has become the first casualty of 2013 because it had done a great deal to turn itself around. It had closed over 100 stores in the past five years since it accepted that its business model was caught between two stools. On the one hand the general public, with perfectly adequate cameras in their mobile phones, had no need for a separate pocket-sized camera and on the other professionals could get their expensive kit cheaper on the internet.

Jessops won’t be the last retailer to disappear from the High Street this year. Music chain HMV will probably be next.


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