Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 18°C

min temp: 13°C

Search

UK: 2,000 jobs at risk as camera chain Jessops enters administration

PUBLISHED: 14:23 09 January 2013 | UPDATED: 16:23 09 January 2013

Jessops

Jessops

AROUND 2,000 jobs at camera chain Jessops are under threat after the group collapsed into administration today, with a warning that store closures are “inevitable”.

PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) has been appointed to the group, which is Britain’s only specialist nationwide camera retailer, with nearly 200 stores, including branches in Ipswich Bury St Edmunds, Colchester, Lowestoft, Chelmsford, Cambridge and Norwich.

It marks the first high-profile retail collapse of 2013 and comes soon after consumer electricals chain Comet hit the wall, sparking more than 6,000 job losses.

Jessops, which has its headquarters in Leicester, has suffered in recent years from online competition and the boom in camera phones, which has hit demand for digital cameras.

It underwent a major overhaul in 2007 and a swathe of store closures, but came close to collapse two years later before being rescued by its main lender HSBC in a controversial debt-for-equity swap that saw it taken off the stock market.

The bank took a 50% stake in the business in return for writing off £34 million of loans.

There was speculation last year that suppliers such as Canon were considering injecting cash into Jessops to help prop the business up, but no deal materialised.

Rob Hunt, joint administrator and a partner at PwC said today: “Over the last few days the directors, funders and key suppliers have been in discussions as regards additional consensual financial support for the business.

“However these discussions have not been successful. In light of these irreconcilable differences the directors decided to appoint administrators and we were appointed earlier today.

“Our most pressing task is to review the company’s financial position and hold discussions with its principal stakeholders to see if the business can be preserved.

“Trading in the stores is hoped to continue today but is critically dependent on these ongoing discussions. However, in the current economic climate it is inevitable that there will be store closures.”

“Finally, at present Jessops is not in a position to honour customer vouchers or to accept returned goods,” he added.

Jessops last year also suffered the loss of its chief executive Trevor Moore, who left to head up HMV, as well as its chairman David Adams.

Martyn Everett was then appointed as chairman and Neil Old was promoted to lead the business as chief operating officer.

The firm began life in 1935 when Frank Jessop opened his first shop in Leicester.

Comments have been disabled on this article.

A 50-year-old man from Cambridgeshire who was arrested after a fatal crash on the A140 on Tuesday will appear in court tomorrow to face dangerous driving charges.

Emergency services including firefighters, police and paramedics are at the scene of a serious crash in Lowestoft.

An Essex father who threw a corrosive liquid at a teenager outside a popular restaurant in Walton-on-the-Naze will now face years behind bars.

A jealous Suffolk man who fired a BB gun at a car after finding text messages from the vehicle’s owner on his partner’s phone has been jailed for ten months.

A group of men from London are facing drugs charges and money laundering offences after a police chase on the A14 at the weekend.

A former geography teacher from Essex says that schoolchildren should be taught more about what to do if a natural disaster occurs after getting caught up in the earthquake which hit Kos last week.

Drivers heading home from work in west Suffolk this evening could face long delays on the A11 after a lorry tipped over on the southbound carriageway near Barton Mills.

Most read

Eating Out in the Broads

cover

Click here to view
the Eating Out
supplement

View

Visit the Broads

cover

Click here to view
the Visit the Broads
supplement

View

Show Job Lists

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
MyDate24 MyPhotos24