Platé and Co
Dates and places
Active in Ceylon 1890s-1940s.
Legal status / Nationality
The firm became a private limited company in 1900.
Sphere of activity
The photographic business was established by A.W.A. Platé and his wife Clara in a small studio in the Bristol Hotel in 1890. It moved to larger premises in Colpetty in 1892.
'Mr Heinemann joined the firm as managing partner and the business continued to steadily expand, with the result that the present staff of the establishment comprises ten Europeans and over 60 natives. Besides their Colpetty studio and several others in Colombo, Messrs. Plate have a branch establishment at Nuwara Eliya… and, in addition, book-stalls at the Queen's Hotel, Kandy, and the Galle Face Hotel, Colombo. The Colpetty studio and office practically represent the headquarters of the firm, and here are located extensive work-rooms, dark-rooms, show-rooms and other adjuncts to a photographic establishment, in addition to the spacious studio, reckoned to be one of the finest in the East' (Wright 1907, p.XX).
The firm became a private limited company in 1900 and the business was enlarged to concentrate on the supplying of photographic apparatus and material. In 1907 the firm had an output of postcards of half a million. It probably took over the stock of W.L.H. Skeen. Platé and Co. were still trading in the 1940s.
Publications: Platé and Co. (19--), The hundred best views of Ceylon : from photographs taken by the publishers. Colombo.