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Springfield camera business to close

Fairborn store also shutting down as Dodd moves elsewhere.

Dodd Camera will close retail stores in Springfield and Fairborn but plans to open a new store at Austin Landing and increase the size of its Beavercreek location, the company’s chief financial officer said Monday.

The company, based in Cleveland, will close locations at 2009 N. Bechtle Ave. in Springfield, as well as at 14 E. Main St. in Fairborn, said Adam Carreras, CFO for Dodd Camera. A location at the Dayton Mall will also close this year.

He said the company is opening a new store this fall at the Austin Landing Development south of Dayton and will roughly double the size of its Beavercreek location at 4408 Indian Ripple Road by expanding into a space next door. The company’s Kettering store at 14 West Stroop Road will also remain open.

Carreras declined to discuss why the Springfield location is closing, but said the new store and the expanded Beavercreek location shows the company is reinvesting in the business overall. The company purchased area Click Camera stores, which were based in Dayton, in 2005.

“They’re going to be larger, better stocked stores with more inventory that can show off everything our company has to offer,” Carreras said.

Dodd also declined to comment on what effect the closings will have on employees. Although the Springfield and Fairborn stores will close, he said the remaining locations will be larger and need additional employees as well. Overall, he estimated the company has about 100 employees throughout Ohio and Illinois.

However, longtime customers like Victor Schafer said it will be hard to see the Springfield location close. Schafer said he has a good relationship with the local store’s staff and regularly used the location to shop for accessories and filters for his cameras.

“Now you don’t have another camera store at all in Springfield,” Schafer said.

The photo industry is changing rapidly and becoming more competitive, especially with increased use of smartphones and digital photography, said Jennifer Kruger, a spokeswoman for the Photo Marketing Association, an industry trade group.

However, she said Dodd has remained in business for more than 100 years, and she added interest in photography in general is at an all-time high.

“They can kind of keep an eye on the market and see what’s happening,” Kruger said of Dodd.

For example, point and shoot photography is declining due to smartphones, Kruger said, but customers are also becoming more interested in more advanced photo equipment, as well as finding more creative ways of using their photos.

“There certainly have been some closings, but there are also some retailers who have been able to make that work for them,” Kruger said.

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