Wex Photographic and Calumet complete merger

Wex Photographic and Calumet's UK arm have completed their merger.

The two companies, which are both owned by Aurelius Equity Opportunities, had been set to merge since March, a process that has now been completed.

Wex Photographic states that the move will create "a single, market-leading business that will cater to the needs of a wide range of enthusiast and professional photographers."

All visitors to Calumet's UK website are now redirected to Wex Photographic's site. Furthermore, it is understood that Calumet's retail stores in the UK will take on Wex Photographic's branding in the coming months, and will benefit from extensive investment to improve shop fittings, customer comfort and stock.

Studio products and accessories sold under the Calumet brand, however, will continue to be badged in the same way.

Aurelius Equity Opportunities bought Wex Photographic earlier this year from Barclays. It already owned Calumet Photographic's UK operations, as well as lighting company Bowens, which folded earlier this year.

Calumet's European operations, which include stores in the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany, will continue to trade under the Calumet banner. Calumet had also previously traded as Calumet Photo in the United States, although it declared bankruptcy in 2014.

Petapixel has also reported that the new operation is likely to trade under the name Wex Photo Video, although this was not confirmed in this week's announcement.

Although Calumet has operated eight retail stores in the UK to Wex Photographic's single Norwich-based showroom, a press release for this week's announcement states that market research showed the latter company to be the better-known brand.

Wex Photographic also owns UK-based repair centre Fixation, which will continue to trade under its own branding.

David Garratt, Chief Executive Officer at Wex, commented: “Our vision is to create the country’s best-loved photo and video retailer through reliably excellent service, range, convenience and advice. We will continue to work hard to help photographers and filmmakers of all abilities meet their objectives, whether online, in-store or on the phone.”

To find out more about the move visit Wex Photographic's FAQ page.

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Matt Golowczynski

The former editor of Digital Camera World, "Matt G" has spent the bulk of his career working in or reporting on the photographic industry. For two and a half years he worked in the trade side of the business with Jessops and Wex, serving as content marketing manager for the latter. 

Switching streams he also spent five years as a journalist, where he served as technical writer and technical editor for What Digital Camera before joining DCW, taking on assignments as a freelance writer and photographer in his own right. He currently works for SmartFrame, a specialist in image-streaming technology and protection.