Millburn Camera and ASAP Photo to Merge in November
Millburn Camera will move into ASAP's space, and the two businesses will become Millburn Camera ASAP.
For 25 years Millburn Camera and ASAP Photo have been competitors in downtown Millburn, but in a few weeks that won't be the case.
The two businesses, which are around the corner from each other, will be merging to become Millburn Camera ASAP. It will be located on Main Street in ASAP Photo's current location. It also means the end to Millburn Camera's 60 year run on Millburn Avenue. The change is expected to happen the first two weeks in November.
The merger, which had been in discussions for about two months, came down to a lease issue. Carl Mink, Millburn Camera owner, said his lease was up, and he started exploring different scenarios and had a good conversation with Gennaro Raimo, ASAP Photo owner. Raimo said he owns his building so he writes his own lease. The move into his store made sense.
Both Mink and Raimo said the two businesses merging will complement each other, although there will be some overlapping. Millburn Camera features camera sales, which ASAP does not. ASAP has a photo lab on premises, which Millburn Camera does not.
"There won't be significant changes except some different services," Mink said of how things will be different. "He has a certain product mix and I have a certain product mix."
The duo has a similar personality when it comes to business, Raimo said, which will help with the partnership. Plus the staff will stay the same from both stores.
And Raimo said the reaction has been good from customers and friends. Many say it's a good idea.
Both businesses have seen significant changes in the last 25 years, Raimo saying it's turned completely "upside down." He doesn't process negatives any more, and there no longer are problems with dust and scratches. Plus there just aren't a lot of one-hour photo businesses open any more because people aren't doing as much printing, he said.
But there's still much the same, Mink said. "We're still helping people with their memories," he said. His staff helps people get the memories, keep them and sometimes even rescue them.