Sandon photography firm finds international success

09:47 07 August 2013

Cityscape

Cityscape

Archant

A PHOTOGRAPHY firm has come top of the class after rapidly developing to become one of the largest school photographers in the United Arab Emirates.

Exports now account for just under a third of Sandon-based Pret-a-Portrait’s £2.5 million turnover. The studio family portrait and school photography firm is now achieving annual overseas sales of £700,000 since their first export order in 2008.

Starting with school photographs in England in 2005, Pret-a-Portrait’s fresh approach of studio-style pictures of each pupil and year group meant their business quickly expanded. It wasn’t long before the friend of sister of Director, Adam Berry, who lives in Dubai, persuaded a local school of expat children to give them a try.

Adam, who co-founded the firm in 2003 with friend Nick Kerr, said: “The work picked up more quickly and was more profitable in Dubai than in the UK. Our team of 40 photographers were delighted. From a standard job as a twice a year school photographer to international postings in warmer climes, it was great.”

The firm has now found fame across Dubai after creating a photograph which featured local schoolchildren representing the Dubai cityscape, imitating the shadow puppet style of Britain’s Got Talent winner Attraction. The 5ft by 2ft printed version made nearly £5,000 in an auction for charity.

“I’d say to any firm that hasn’t explored overseas markets yet, keep your eyes open for an opportunity and provide the best quality work.”

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