Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Wolf Camera at Birkdale Village reopens

One of the three Wolf Camera stores shut down earlier this year as part of parent company Ritz Camera's liquidation has reopened under new management.

C&A Marketing Inc. bought some of the Ritz brands, including Wolf Camera, during the final phases of Ritz's bankruptcy proceedings. The Birkdale Village store is one of 18 bricks-and-mortar stores that C&A is bringing back.
Ritz's main website image
The company is also operating the RitzPix online imaging service, with prints, photo books, and other services on order. C&A is also continuing existing customer loyalty programs as an added incentive to Ritz and Wolf customers.

"We chose these eighteen stores to re-open because they are in key markets across the country that need a personal, knowledgeable photo speciality shop, which also serve as an integral part of their communities. Even though the photo industry continues to transform, we are dedicated to bringing a new, sustainable business model to the Ritz Camera stores and their customers," said C&A president Harry Klein, in a statement.

"Our strategic investment focuses on integrating our online sites with our retail locations, and to offer a one-stop photography resource where customers can purchase premium products and popular imaging gifts," said Klein.

The revived stores are staffed with their original employees, C&A said. Here's more on their plans for the Ritz, and Wolf, camera store brands: "The stores and websites will have fresh, current, and comprehensive inventory, and will continue to offer the full range of quality imaging products and services that consumers have come to expect of the Ritz Camera brand. In addition to the stores, C&A will grow the online imaging speciality business, RitzPix.com, which provides high standard photography offerings including film processing, image restorations, premium gifts including custom book printing, and more at the retail locations and a full-service imaging lab."

C&A has some experience with faded imaging brands. The company is the official licensee for many Polaroid products. As the company notes: "C&A already plays a significant role in the resurgence of one iconic American imaging brand."

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Anonymous said...

You're in a dying industry. Please, just say "Uncle," close up shop and move on.

Am I speaking about Ritz Camera or the Charlotte Observer? $10 per month for what? AP news? Southern Bias perspective?

As for Ritz, the writing was on the wall and they were overpriced. They never changed with the times.

Both Ritz and the Charlotte Observer are dinosaurs, and we all know that dinosaurs are extinct.

Anonymous said...

Yea!!! The Birkdale store employees are terrific - glad to see the reopening.

Davidson said...

Great news! And it is terrific they are bringing back the employees. They are the nicest people and experts in what they do.

Anonymous said...

Southern bias? Sweetie, you do realize you're in the South, riiight? If you want your news to be New York centric, how bout you head on up there dahlin? Run along now and take a coupla friends with ya. How niiiice!!!

WashuOtaku said...

Makes sense, it's a respected brand and though brick and mortar photography stores are less needed today, there will always be people that need to talk to an expert and that builds loyalty. They don't need many stores to function, just one or two per big city; people looking for more about photography will search them out.

Anonymous said...

Unless you can transfer my Mom and Dad's old slides to DVD you can close back up for all I care.

Anonymous said...

The place was over priced when it was Wolf, and it's over priced now. Have they not figured out that Camera's are digital now? We can take pictures, upload them and print from home with the same quality?

Anonymous said...

Ely, what does Anonymous 9:27AM's post have to do with your article? I thought the reason for your moderating is for you NOT to have posts on here that fail to address the subject content?

This is about Ritz Camera and how it is still alive, just barely, is it not? Is the article not about how consumers can still go to Birkdale Village to have quality prints developed at Ritz over the Holiday Season?
Then why include Anonymous 9:27Am's post, when all it deals with is making sure that to note that she is a southerner? Please, if you are going to moderate, then do it.
I, for one, am glad Ritz Camera is still around. I have bought cameras, lenses, developed film, and have gone there for just sheer education countless times. So sad times have changed and another Company has been so decimated.

Anonymous said...

For the people who think you can "print them at home" and have the same quailty you must not have very high standards. I've seen the pictures my mother is so proud of becasue she printed them and it makes me cring.

Anonymous said...

Use Costco for photo processing. Its far cheaper, and faster too. I was turned away at Ritz camera because it was 10 minutes before closing time, and after I realized they charge 5x as much for the same thing as Costco, I won't go back anyway. BTW, Walgreens and CVS are just as expensive for photo processing, but convenient indeed since they are on every other corner in town.

Ely Portillo said...

Hi Anon 11:54. I can understand why you're a bit confused, so I'll try to clarify. The moderation was mostly to cut down on the amount of straight-up racist comments, often with racial language, that were cropping up. For some reason, they were especially focused on supermarket stories. So, I've been able to cut those down quite a bit. Beyond that, I try to let as many comments as I can go up.

Unknown said...

The imaging industry has indeed evolved to an entirely different phase of a digital era. Camera stores are bound to be affected by this drastic change but with proper marketing strategies, they will be able to still retain their old customers. They can also introduce packages that include traditional modes of imaging together with digital imaging to rope customers in with features like digital storage of photos, touch-up of old photos and many more.