Ritz Adds Photo, Video Services

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WASHINGTON — Ritz & Wolf Camera & Image is offering photography and videography services in four major markets.

The specialty imaging chain recently launched the “On Location” program in Minneapolis and Salt Lake City, added the service in Dallas and Denver, and plans to roll the program out nationwide next spring.

Services initially include business and family portraiture and sporting events, shot on location by Ritz & Wolf photographers.

“This really is an exciting time for the Ritz & Wolf brand as we continue to grow our company in ways that we never imagined or, in this case, haven’t utilized in decades,” said president Stephen LaMastra, in a reference to the company’s roots as a portrait studio. “We have some of the most highly trained photographers, all of [whom] are certified, to offer our customers affordable, professional photography and videography, delivered to their doorstep.”

On Location services include business imaging, from single headshots to staff portraits; family, pet and high school senior portraits; and sports and game photography, with additional categories to follow. The company said its staff is experienced in a wide range of specialties including commercial, fashion, sports, wildlife, landscape, portrait and even wire service photography.

The 90-year-old chain has been adding services and diversifying its assortment since re-emerging from bankruptcy one year ago. While d-SLR remains its core hardware category, the company has expanded its CE assortment to include camcorders, netbooks, flat-panel TVs and, under a partnership with Verizon Wireless, cell and smartphones, although its greatest growth is in photo albums, calendars, greeting cards, prints and enlargements.

Ritz operates about 300 stores in 36 states, as well as an e-commerce site at RitzPix.com. The privately- held business was founded by Benjamin Cohen in 1918 as an Atlantic City, N.J., portrait studio. His grandson, current chairman/ CEO David Ritz, led the 2001 acquisition of cousin Chuck Wolf ’s Wolf Camera chain, which raised the store count to over 800 locations in more than 40 states.

Ritz bought back the business in a bankruptcy sale last year, and has since restructured operations and reopened shuttered stores.


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