Jessops administration has left its customers high and dry by stopping online purchases and gift vouchers as thousands of customers who pre-ordered pricey cameras from Jessops will have to pay again if they want them. Although the Jessops website clearly states on other web pages that vouchers priced between £20 and £500 cannot be collected in store, they are still listed as being available for “home and work delivery”. Attempts to add vouchers to the wish list prior to check-out then defaults to the same message that has been inserted on the home page.
Regarding processing of orders, Jessops website states on its home page: “Please note that the Jessops website will not currently process orders however you are able to read product descriptions, customer reviews and watch videos. Our Photo service website continues to trade as normal. To process your photographic work please click on the Photo Printing link on our main menu.”
Jessops decision not to honour customers’ gift vouchers has drawn a lot of flack from those who have made pre-orders. The situation is similar to last year when Comet customers found that they could not redeem cards as the electrical chain went into administration. An angry online customer of Jessops Francis Donnelly said, “I have over £150 of vouchers that I was given for my birthday in December, not only should they be valid I should be given a full refund as you would not want to buy anything from a shop that is going out of business. And anyone with vouchers should also be given any interest that the money sitting in their bank has made.”
Jessops staff, who were stunned at the revelation on Wednesday of Jessops going into administration, feel they would be at the receiving end from both the company and the customers. One Jessops worker said, “There are things people have paid for, reserved or ordered. But we’ve been told they can’t have it. Even if stuff is in for repair, we can’t give it back. Yet again it’s us in the front line who will get all the abuse.”
Meanwhile, Jessops administrators, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) said that the decision to honour deposits or vouchers would be made by the new buyer, the hunt for whom has begun. It is believed that lenders, directors, suppliers and potential buyers have been holding intense discussions last night and again this morning to save Jessops.