Lifetouch Inc. said this week it will disband Glossy Finish by Lifetouch, a sports photography business it formed two years ago by merging acquisitions.
The unit, which provided team and individual photos for a variety of youth sports leagues, will halt business operations on Sept. 22 and phase out all services in October, according to a letter sent by Lifetouch to freelance photographers who worked with Glossy Finish.
The decision to disband the business was "based on the overall profitability of this business segment in relation to the other Lifetouch businesses," the letter said.
Glossy Finish operates in about 20 states and employs hundreds of freelance photographers throughout the year for varied amounts of time. In Minnesota, the business had 21 freelance photographers on its roster. The company in the closure letter encouraged photographers to apply for work in its other divisions.
A company spokeswoman said most of the 47 full-time employees for Glossy Finish will transfer to other jobs inside the Eden Prairie-based company. Lifetouch will continue to provide sports photography services to many of the Glossy Finish customers.
Lifetouch is the nation's largest producer of school photos and IDs and it also publishes school yearbooks and church directories and operates portrait studios in retailers like J.C. Penney. The closely held company has about $1.5 billion in revenue.
Lifetouch bought two sports photography companies, Sportography in 2008 and Action Sports in 2013, and eventually combined them under the new brand Glossy Finish. The business accounted for less than 1 percent of Lifetouch's revenue.