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Ritz / Wolf Camera in Liquidation
Posted By: E-man, 09-12-2012, 12:33 PM

I just read that Ritz / Wolf Camera is now in liquidation and the company will shut down in the next couple of months. All of their retail locations have begun marking merchandise down to move it out. Prices are cut 10-30% now. Could be some good deals to be had.
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09-12-2012, 07:59 PM   #16
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making cents

QuoteOriginally posted by Docrwm Quote
But that is the stated purpose of MAP - to get Pentax into all those B&M camera stores that don't carry Pentax already.
Should be called MAD-P - Mutually Assured Destructive Pricing. Does not make any sense unless one is an old monopoly, like AT&T used to be to set pricing. The market must set the natural price, that's the way it is supposed to work. MAP just forces money elsewhere, more choice and support with bigger brand names for the same lousy dollars.

Wolf - last time was 5 years ago. Bought a step-up ring for $14, the kind you can get from China thru eBay for about $3. Not sorry to see them go in the least, except for those employees who have no one else to turn to for employment..... At least there is PJ's and Calumet in my area, which I do buy from.



09-12-2012, 08:17 PM   #17
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Personally confirmed today from various conversations from places such as: (the headquarters) near Baltimore, and also over one dozen retail locations... Ritz is done this time around. The name will be nearly complete history in about three to six months

By owners who had no clue what they were doing - for over two decades. Good ole Dave Ritz could almost be viewed as a worse example than perhaps Howard Hughes, but at least Hughes actually tried. Nothing like seeing Ritz waste every penny of the companies money on his many planes and boats. They never even saw digital coming, and then never fully adapted to it. Managers who had next to no photography knowledge - many came from places such as convenience stores. Most employees never trained properly and also naturally not compensated well - so who could blame them for not putting forthe the effort. Just another example of a poorly run company.

...And then there is the generic Quantaray line. Outside of the lens' there isn't any quality to be found anywhere in that name.
09-12-2012, 08:42 PM   #18
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Ritz was just the one-hour photo place at the mall -- always considered them a place for non-photographers.
09-12-2012, 08:51 PM   #19
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I bought several good things from them, but they were no friend of Pentax - they sold the K100d but the salesdude could not enable the aperture ring and scared me off to the A200. I got better though! During their first liquidation I got the Quantaray 18-200 (Sigma) for about $150 new, quite a steal - and they had PK versions by the score at that particular store.

09-12-2012, 10:37 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by VoiceOfReason Quote
I had the local Wolf Camera tell me I was stupid for buying Pentax
Must be company policy...

The last time I visited my local Wolf Camera was probably 4 years ago. That particular store used to be great (probably 15 or 20 years ago, but the last trip I made was almost a complete waste (I found the Eneloops for my K100D). They had a very small collection of decent bags and a handful of tripods off to one side, the same Canikons that Worst Buy carries in the mostly empty cases, and the rest of the store was the worst collection of Chinese Fleabay specials (with about 900% markup) and gaudy photo albums/frames I've ever seen. Out of curiosity I sought out one of the staff (which was needlessly difficult in such a small store) and asked if they carried any Pentax gear and he said, "We might be able to order some, but I don't know why you'd want any of it."

Unless it has gotten better, I can't say I'm surprised by their dire situation. I do feel bad for the employees losing their jobs, but I'm not going to miss anything once its gone. That said, there is actually a local store in a less convenient part of town (now that I don't go to University anymore) that can take up the slack (if they hadn't already).
09-13-2012, 09:32 AM   #21
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My local Wolf, Ritz' presence here in the Atlanta area, closed without ceremony over a month ago. I was sorry to see it go, it was only a couple of miles away and offered very cheap 3 1/2 x 5 prints midweek, a deal I took advantage of. Yes, I bought other stuff, too. The staff was friendly and competent, and knew of and appreciated Pentax, even though the chain no longer carried our brand. One staffer even shot Pentax, he confided quietly, and was hoping to find a fast 50 somewhere. Back only a few years ago their flagship store, on 14th near I-75, was a proper store with a good range of products. Then it moved and contracted to no more than 1500 ft sq and was no longer on my go-to list. B & M stores are vanishing around here. Sic transit gloria mundi....
09-13-2012, 07:55 PM   #22
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I thought Camera World (Portland, OR) was owned by Ritz... true? If so, wondering what will happen there.
09-13-2012, 10:07 PM   #23
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Other than the Big Box stores, Walmart, Comp USA, Target, Best Buy they were the only camera store here, Ritz. I won't call them real because you used to walk in there and they'd have maybe 5 models of cameras at any given time. Only Nikon and Canon, of course, but even then you couldn't see the full line of what was out, and they never had lenses other than the kit lenses and a 75-200 zoom for each brand of camera. They did develop and sell film for a long time, expensively, and usually to very bad results, but they dumped it almost immediately when digital came out.

They were a camera store for non-photographers and tourists and even before I got my first digital I knew I'd never buy a camera there. No one in there new crap about photography and even as a newbie I could see that. Everything they sold, and it wasn't much, you'd walk in and the store would be empty, no bags, no accessories, the minimum # of cameras, it was pathetic, was extremely overpriced compared to say Best Buy or Comp USA. At the end they actually let part of their store to some cell phone carrier and they basically became a kiosk in what was once their own store. At that point I think everyone knew they were over but no one cared except the guys who still worked there.

09-14-2012, 11:13 AM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by E-man Quote
I agree with this sentiment on the surface. Ritz was never my favorite camera store. What's truly unfortunate about its demise is that it leaves a lot of communities without anywhere but Walmart and Best Buy for their camera needs since Ritz's expansion over the past 20 years or so has centered around absorbing established, local independent camera stores. I can think of several fine camera stores that I used to frequent in various communities where I've lived that got 'Ritzed' over the years. But I guess that's the way the (Ritz) cracker crumbles...
I noticed the last time I was in the local Wal-mart there were NO cameras, the camera display had become a iPad, iPod, etc area. They still had some accessories, like a Lowepro lens case for $18.99 that can be had from B&H for $12 (that was their clearance price by the way). I'm also always amazed in these kind of stores that they can sell older slower SD cards at top prices.

Interestingly after reading this thread I went to the Wal-Mart website, they have several K-30 kits, K-01, , a few lenses, and seven colors of K-rs available to "pick up in store". P&S sales must be plummeting for this to happen.
09-14-2012, 12:41 PM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by ramseybuckeye Quote
I noticed the last time I was in the local Wal-mart there were NO cameras, the camera display had become a iPad, iPod, etc area. They still had some accessories, like a Lowepro lens case for $18.99 that can be had from B&H for $12 (that was their clearance price by the way). I'm also always amazed in these kind of stores that they can sell older slower SD cards at top prices.

Interestingly after reading this thread I went to the Wal-Mart website, they have several K-30 kits, K-01, , a few lenses, and seven colors of K-rs available to "pick up in store". P&S sales must be plummeting for this to happen.
It's through their "ship-to-store" option. I've tried that with WalMart and it was a nightmare each time. The local staff have no idea what you are talking about, can't find the item, question its existence, etc.
09-14-2012, 12:48 PM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by ramseybuckeye Quote
Interestingly after reading this thread I went to the Wal-Mart website, they have several K-30 kits, K-01, , a few lenses, and seven colors of K-rs available to "pick up in store".
If your local Walmart is anything like mine, I doubt they actually have those in a store. My local Walmart has a display of about 20 p&s/camcorders and a small glass box where they allow you to look at an aging Nikon model and an aged Canon model and maybe a mirrorless Nikon. I think my store has a d3100, Pink V1, and a T3i. They do, however, have a shipping option that basically consists of them tossing your item on the next truck to your local store where you can pick it up at a special desk. No one who hasn't looked at their website will ever know they even sell that stuff and it is a much better selection than they have in the store.
09-14-2012, 01:06 PM   #27
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Nothing new here. The same thing is happening in the U.K:

UK retail chain Jacobs closes down all stores - British Journal of Photography

I dont except any camera store to survive unless they have a big online presence and only one or two physical locations.
09-14-2012, 01:32 PM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by Docrwm Quote
It's through their "ship-to-store" option. I've tried that with WalMart and it was a nightmare each time. The local staff have no idea what you are talking about, can't find the item, question its existence, etc.
Yep, you really have to want the item to go through that, clueless and disgruntled employees abound. Seems to be no training or awareness that the company is offering the service.

QuoteOriginally posted by meeverett Quote
If your local Walmart is anything like mine, I doubt they actually have those in a store. My local Walmart has a display of about 20 p&s/camcorders and a small glass box where they allow you to look at an aging Nikon model and an aged Canon model and maybe a mirrorless Nikon. I think my store has a d3100, Pink V1, and a T3i. They do, however, have a shipping option that basically consists of them tossing your item on the next truck to your local store where you can pick it up at a special desk. No one who hasn't looked at their website will ever know they even sell that stuff and it is a much better selection than they have in the store.
They do not have them in ANY store, they ship it to the store instead of your home, and you pick it up there. Our local store has NO cameras at all now. Just as well, a few years ago my daughter wanted specific P&S. We called them and they said they had it. We went to buy it (10 minutes later) and they did not have it. The saleslady on the phone had just assumed all of that brand were the same model, or had assumed we didn't have a clue and would just buy whatever they had.
09-14-2012, 08:16 PM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by OrangeKx Quote
I thought Camera World (Portland, OR) was owned by Ritz... true? If so, wondering what will happen there.
I just got an email from Ritz today advertising their slashed prices because they are going out of business. Camera World is one of the logos at the top. If you haven't seen it, see the link below:

RitzCamera.com Newsletter
09-14-2012, 08:26 PM   #30
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Did the link above and went to the store finder page and it looks like Camera World in Portland, OR will open under new management (along with 4 other locations in the U.S.). Don't go to C.W. on 6th in PDX much but it's a pretty nice store. Easier to shop online than run to downtown PDX.
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