Photo Continental, which has traded as a specialist photo retailer for almost seven decades, closed the doors of its Mt Gravatt, Brisbane store last week. The company announced the news to its saddened customers on its Facebook Page on September 14.
“Photo Continental has had a long history as a family-owned and operated business, having first opened its doors over 60 years ago in 1951.
It is with deep regret that we have had to close our doors on our photographic sales and laboratory departments.
With the change in consumer purchasing habits and along with the general cost of doing business in the current retail environment, Photo Continental can no longer offer the level of customer service and competitive pricing we have been renowned for over the past 64 years,” the notice said.
However, the move was not entirely unexpected. In late December last year, the company also advised its suppliers and customers that it was undergoing a “business transition”.
“With the change in consumer purchasing habits and along with the general cost of doing business, 2015 will see Photo Continental shift its focus back towards the ‘traditional’ photographic market.
“Our photographic retail area will continue to support traditional photographic endeavours such as paper chemistry and film together with a solid range of must have accessories. We will, however, be limiting our exposure to the digital hardware market,” they advised.
Then early in 2015 Photo Continental added, “As we move forward into 2015, we would like to thank all of our loyal customers who have seen our business transition and change in order to compete in the changing world of camera technology. Next year, we are implementing some changes in the vision of Photo Continental in order to continue providing our customers with quality, personalised service. We will continue to support you in your photographic endeavors, and hope to see you in store in the new year!”
The retailer has since held a clearance sale of stock via its website.
The social media reaction Facebook was supportive with around 100 comments in the day after the announcement. They all expressed sadness at the loss of the Brisbane retail icon.
Greg Stubbings: “A sad sign of the times. A ‘giant’ in the Brisbane photographic community has fallen. Thank you for your exceptional customer service over the years. Luck and best wishes for the future to the owners and staff.”
Monica Nolan: “This is very sad news for us the customer and I’m sure especially for staff. All the best to the staff who have helped me over the years with my very amateur photography and processing, super 8mm movie transfers and my family history box camera negative reproductions. I am feeling a little lost already with what I’ll do in the future for my processing but sure that’s the least of the problems.
Again thank you for being there for as long as you could.”