UK camera specialist chain Jessops is to re-launch and re-open high-street stores just two months after going into administration – reappearing as a sleeker and smaller operation.
Set to open with just 30 to 40 stores across the country, the London and Birmingham branches are part of a Â£4m investment into the company from entrepreneurs like Dragons' Den's Peter Jones.
Speaking to the BBC, Jones said: "I think it's a great day for British retail.
"The main reason why I think it's going to be successful is that it's going to be a lower overhead base, lower cost."
He also believes that Jessops core market is the amateur photographer who shun that "perfect photo" taken on a mobile phone.
"The amateur photographer [is Jessops' target market], you wouldn't see them walking down the street taking that perfect picture with a mobile phone."
Jessops will also hire 500 staff members, comprised primarily of former Jessops staff – of which there were 1,500 let go when the chain collapsed.
Ever the optimist, Jones continued by saying: "I believe Jessops is an iconic British brand which can lead the retail resurgence on Britain's high streets, powered by new innovations and world-leading, expert staff."
By combining the online side of Jessops' business with a new and invigorated retail side with strategically placed stores, Jessops should be able to survive in the rather hostile environment that is the new model of retail.
It is, however, good to see that investors are still seeing merits within the high-street model and that the need for a specialist store such as Jessops is also noted.
After all, it's what the customer wants that dictates the success of a business.
Do you think investors are doing the right thing by reviving a high-street retailer like Jessops?
Is their new business model of fewer stores and prominent online presence enough to keep them afloat?
Let us know by leaving a comment below.
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