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Dayton Business Journal...
Report: Kodak to focus on printing after bankruptcy
by DBJ Staff
Sunday, January 8, 2012 

Photo: Eastman Kodak 

If Eastman Kodak Co. carries through with a Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing in the coming weeks as media reports suggest, it could mark the end of a rich, 131-year history as the king of all-things related to photos and cameras, according to a report by 

In the report, Rafferty Capital Markets Analyst Mark Kaufman says the company likely will completely exit the consumer photo and camera business. 

“Forget about it. It’s not making money now,” Kaufman, told 

Instead, the plan would be for Kodak (NYSE:EK) to sell off all of its photo business, unload an extremely profitable chunk of its massive patent library and focus almost exclusively on digital printing as a business-to-business company. 

“It’s not a consumer business, its business-to-business. That’s what you’re going to have,” Kaufman said in the report. 

That would be good news for the Dayton operations, where Kodak has 570 employees at a facility that makes inkjet printers, which are reportedly competing well in the marketplace against such rivals as Hewlett-Packard Co    . and Canon. With the company already having discussed plans for possible growth in Dayton through state and local incentives, an emphasis on the printing side of the business would make those plans more likely to happen. That could lead to more jobs in Dayton and a stronger business for Kodak going forward. 

The report indicates that any bankruptcy filing would give the company some time to shift its business, selling off unprofitable units and valuable patents, and position itself to emerge as a much smaller, yet profitable company. It also could get a boost from any settlement payoff over its patent infringement lawsuit against Apple Inc.    and Research in Motion Ltd. 

The patent in the suit involves technology for previewing digital images on Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPhones and RIM’s (NASDAQ:RIMM) BlackBerrys. There was a mixed decision last year that failed to resolve the claims. A favorable ruling for Kodak could have been worth as much as $1 billion, the company said at the time. 

If the reports of how Kodak would look after emerging from bankruptcy are correct, the company may very well boost its operations in Dayton. In fact, the company already has expressed interest in growing locally. 

In late September, the state of Ohio approved a tax credit package worth $2.9 million over 10 years to entice Kodak to expand in the Dayton region. In addition, the city of Kettering recently committed a $435,000 grant to the company. 

State officials said if the company decides to expand in Kettering, it would invest at least $7.5 million in new manufacturing machinery as well as research and development equipment to help position the Kettering facility for future growth. 

Read this and other articles at Dayton Business Journal


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