We are pleased to welcome B&H Photo Video, to our Lens Band family. Next time you are in Midtown Manhattan, be sure to stop by B&H Photo Video to see what 70,000 square feet of photography heaven looks like click here for directions. If you can’t make it to NYC, you can still encounter this euphoric experience by visiting their website here. Make sure you add a few Lens Bands to your shopping cart, while bundling your purchases.
B&H opened as a storefront film shop on the Lower East Side run by Herman Schreiber and his wife, Blimie (the store’s name comes from their initials). The store quickly outgrew its space. B&H moved to a large loft on West 17th Street in the Photo District in the 1970s. Catering to the needs of neighborhood artists, B&H expanded to selling film equipment as well as photo products. In 1997 the store moved to its present location. It now has a staff of over 1,500 employees. B&H’s flagship store is located in West Midtown Manhattan at 420 Ninth Avenue (at the intersection with 34th Street). On Tuesday October 30, 2007, B&H opened a second floor above its original sales floor making a total of 70,000 sq ft (6,500 m2) of sales space. The first floor encompasses pro lighting, binoculars and scopes, video, audio, darkroom, film, and both home and portable entertainment; the second floor focuses on both analog and digital photography, computers, printers, scanners, and related accessories.
The store is patronized by professional photographers and videographers, serving 5,000 customers per day, while a considerable amount of the company’s business comes from its internet operation. It also runs a warehouse in the Brooklyn Navy Yard located in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. On its website, B&H claims to be the “world’s leading retailer of imaging products.” The store carries a wide range of products as well as professional and specialty equipment.
The business is owned by Herman Schreiber. Schreiber and many of the store’s employees are observant Satmar Hasidic Jews who close the store on Shabbat and Jewish holidays. The website is open but orders are not taken or shipped between Friday evening and Saturday evening and on Jewish holidays. Surpassed only by the Diamond District in terms of Orthodox employment, the company is a vital part of the community’s financial health, with hundreds of Orthodox Jews on staff. An Orthodox Jewish bus company provides daily service to and from Kiryas Joel, a Satmar village in Orange County, New York. On Fridays, vans that carry workers to their homes are parked outside early in the afternoon, so the men can leave work on time to get home by sundown, when the observance of the Sabbath begins. The store does not reopen until Sunday.
In 2007, Google announced that they added B&H as a merchant accepting Google Checkout. When discussing their third-quarter financial results on a October 18, 2007 conference call, Sergey Brin, President and co-founder of Google, said that B&H is his favorite camera store.
Excerpt written by Wikipedia: