A weekly column profiling companies and personalities. This week:
What: CameraRenter, Bellevue
Who: Jonathan Bailor, 25, owner and co-founder
Mission: Supply the means for people to capture the most important days of their lives — weddings, proms, bar mitzvahs and company parties — using rented digital cameras.
Multisource: CameraRenter’s business plan is assembled from available parts, but with a twist. It begins with the now-popular process of giving disposable cameras to wedding or party attendees to help capture the moment. It uses digital technology to aggregate the results, and provides a turnkey event package.
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Rent to own: For distribution it borrows the Netflix model. The cameras are given to selected people and returned in a postage-paid envelope after the event. The company then puts all the content online, so anyone who couldn’t attend gets a three-dimensional look at what they missed.
Don’t try this at home: It does not replace a professional photographer. On the other hand, 30 amateurs clicking away may create a livelier account. “A professional photographer is only there for about six hours — the ceremony and the party,” Bailor said. “We cover the whole event from start to finish, so they can remember every aspect of this most special day.”
Financials: The private company does not share earnings or projections, but says it has “catered” about 30 events so far. Its main source of revenue is the rental fee, offering 10, 20, or 30 cameras for $50 each. This includes processing, organizing and posting, as well as a CD. The pictures stay online for a month, longer for an additional fee.
Friends and family: The company followed another common practice, trying it out on friends. “You miss a lot of details during your own wedding,” said Lincoln Davis, the company’s PR counsel, who used it at his own wedding. “When we got the pictures back, we saw it from the guests’ perspective.”
— Charles Bermant