A Kodak Moment: Patents To Sell for $525 Million

Picture this…

It seems that film isn’t the only thing Kodak has been developing recently.  The famous digital imaging and photography company agreed to sell their patent portfolio to a large group of companies including Google, Apple, and Facebook.  Eastman Kodak, based in Rochester NY, is monetizing their patents to help recover from a recent bankruptcy.  Economists are predicting that the $525 million agreement will help Kodak re-emerge from Chapter 11 in the first half of 2013.  Amazon, Samsung, and Microsoft are also members of the 12-company group of licensees.

Eastman Kodak was once one of the most popular photo/camera companies in the world and intends to use the funds to re-capture their success of the 1980s.  Kodak cameras and film revolutionized the imaging industry as they were one of the first to develop new products using megapixel sensors.  This deal was brokered by a patent-holding company known as Intellectual Ventures, as well as the RPX Corporation, who handles other areas of patent security.  Ironically, Kodak’s recent bankruptcy seems to have been directly affected by the licensees in the agreement, once viewed as their competitors.  It is not known yet how Google, Apple, or Facebook will use the Kodak patents, however many are speculating that information will begin to trickle out sooner rather than later.


One thought on “A Kodak Moment: Patents To Sell for $525 Million

  1. Kevin Maher Post author

    I’ve always had a personal connection with Kodak, as my father used to work for them during the 80s when the company was in its prime. Often viewed as a blue-collar company, it is bittersweet to learn of the company’s bankruptcy; however a $525 million injection should help offset the $830 million in loans they received in 2012. This is truly a sign of the times; Apple was once a company very similar to Kodak when I was a kid, especially since my dad had direct connections to both. It’s not a stretch to say that companies like Research in Motion, Shutterfly, and even parts of Fujifilm are shaped from the mold that Kodak had built. Selling their patents seemed to be the necessary thing to do; it’s nice to see Kodak, once again, thinking of the bigger picture.

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