Hard-up Kodak stalls crown jewels sell-off to milk bidders
1,100 patents going for a mere few billion dollars
Kodak, the poor-as-a-church-mouse photo biz, has decided to keep its patent auction fundraiser going for a while as it chats up bidders.
The firm, which filed for bankruptcy protection in January, is selling off its portfolio of digital imaging technology, containing some 1,100 patents, to pay off its creditors and reinvent itself as a printer company. Bidders include tech giants Apple, Google and Microsoft, who are reportedly in the running to snap up the arsenal of intellectual property.
In a statement, Kodak said the auction was ongoing but wouldn't give any further details because the negotiations are confidential. The firm was scheduled to announced the winning bidder on Monday, well before a bankruptcy court hearing on 20 August.
Kodak reckons it can bag between $2.2bn and $2.6bn from the flogging its silverware, although it's rumoured that Apple, Microsoft and Google started off their negotiations with lowball offers.
The hard-up company hopes to be out of bankruptcy by early next year, and needs the money to make that happen.
As well as focusing in on its printing business, Kodak said in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission yesterday that it wants to expand its presence in the industrial packaging industry. ®
Cellphones killed the cellulose star.
Scary to think that Kodak produced the first digital camera in 1975 (yes, Seventy Five) but then killed it because of concerns of what it would do to their photo film business, something they had a near monopoly on at the time.
Talk about massive blunders. They could have had the market sewn up all over again for another 50 years.
"This is something that Kodak's management missed big time as their brain trust was wildly undervalued."
I think you meant "their brains were wildly underused" or "they had shit for brains"; they had the best known brand in photography, a head start on a lot of key technology and good scientists and engineers but they still bankrupted the company!
Not the only blunder by Kodak
It is truly too bad that Kodak did not recognize the value of all of it's R&D work. This is something that Kodak's management missed big time as their brain trust was wildly undervalued. I dare say those people could think up more stuff in a few days than most could in a lifetime. Xerox missed the boat as well.
Now Kodak is a dried up husk of it's former self and we have their management to blame.
BTW since most movie production companies are no longer using film and going all digital, you'll be sad to hear that most art theaters and small movie houses will be going out of business soon.
There will be no first run films left to fill their projectors and Digital projectors are way beyond the means of the small theaters