Celebrating 45 years of KEH: a legacy in photography, circularity, and accessibility

Photography is a powerful medium for storytelling, capturing moments full of emotion and memory. At the heart of this art form lie the tools of the trade—cameras, lenses, and other accessories—that enable photographers to translate their visions into tangible images. For over four decades, KEH Camera has played a pivotal role in this journey — not just as a retailer but as a passionate guardian of photographic heritage and a pioneer of circularity and accessibility in the world of photography.

KEH through the years

Founded in 1979, KEH Camera began as a modest enterprise focused on buying and selling used cameras and photographic equipment, with magazine ads and mail catalogs serving as the backbone of the business for decades. From these humble beginnings, KEH has grown into the largest pre-owned camera store in the world. The company’s name stands for knowledge, excellence, and heart, symbolizing our enduring commitment to the photographic community.

KEH’s model was revolutionary for its time, emphasizing the value of pre-owned gear in an industry that often prioritized the new and cutting-edge. By meticulously inspecting, grading, and refurbishing equipment, we ensure that photographers can access high-quality tools without breaking the bank. This commitment has democratized access to photography and laid the groundwork for a sustainable, circular economy within the industry.

Our unmatched dedication to circularity

Circularity—the concept of extending the lifecycle of products through reuse and recycling—is central to KEH’s mission. As the retail and manufacturing industries’ impact on the environment becomes increasingly evident, we continually work to minimize the photography industry’s footprint.

Every camera, lens, and accessory that KEH buys, refurbishes, and resells represents a step towards reducing electronic waste and conserving resources.

This approach benefits photographers and the planet alike. For seasoned professionals, KEH offers the opportunity to upgrade or change their gear more frequently without contributing to wasteful disposal. For newcomers, KEH provides a more affordable entry point into the world of photography, making high-quality equipment accessible to a broader audience.

Looking to the future

We’ve come a long way, but KEH is not done yet. If 45 years has taught us anything, it’s that the world of photography is ever-evolving, and so are we. As we celebrate our legacy in photography, circularity, and accessibility, we look forward to continuing to innovate, educate, and adapt.

As KEH Camera aims to expand its reach further in the coming years, reaching more photographers worldwide and enhancing our sustainability efforts, this new motto will keep us grounded in our roots.

Thank you for being a part of our story. Here’s to the next 45 years and beyond!




If you want to keep up with the latest news from KEH, check out these blogs: 

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