If you haven't already read it...

Discussion in 'Industry News' started by semi-ambivalent, Sep 30, 2011.

  1. semi-ambivalent

    semi-ambivalent Subscriber

    Messages:
    700
    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2011
    Shooter:
    35mm
  2. Athiril

    Athiril Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,887
    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2009
    Location:
    Melbourne, V
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
  3. aldevo

    aldevo Member

    Messages:
    895
    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2004
    Location:
    Cambridge, M
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Not surprising

    You could see the writing on the wall a week or more ago when they tapped their revolving credit line - which was a suprise to many people.

    I think the company has been up for sale from the moment they went after the consumer inkjet market and I believe their strategy had always been to "inconvenience" a Lexmark or HP into acquiring them.

    When the emphasis shifted to lawsuits over patent revenue - it was obvious that the end was near and a breakup was certain.

    I'm not quite ready to say this is the end of Kodak film - but any group acquiring that division will have to accept some pretty hairy risks from toxic torts for the next century...
     
  4. Athiril

    Athiril Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,887
    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2009
    Location:
    Melbourne, V
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Well it sounds more like the rest of the company that's not film production is the sinking ship, ironically.

    edit:

    If the film-production division was hurting the company that bad while the rest of it was fine, it'd obviously be axed or sold off.

    If the film-production division was doing bad while the rest of it was fine, that wouldn't be news and their credit/finances would be fine.

    I think it's obvious which part of the company is a problem. Not a part we have to worry about.

    We have to worry about spill-over effects of decisions on the part we care about, and the rest of the company dragging down the film-division..
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 30, 2011
  5. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

    Messages:
    17,523
    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2004
    Location:
    West Midland
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Poor management for many years and no focus on how to take the company forward in the consumer market compounded by an extremely poor choice of CEO in Perez has brough t this on.

    Ian
     
  6. semi-ambivalent

    semi-ambivalent Subscriber

    Messages:
    700
    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2011
    Shooter:
    35mm
    I think the Bloomberg piece mentions the possibility of bankruptcy as a way to lessen chances of issues with the transfer of intellectual property, so as to make their patents more attractive. I'll re-read it later, but I agree, it looks pretty grim for the company as it is now.

    Open letter to Kodak: If you keep making Tri-X I'll keep buying it. Probably some other stuff too.
     
  7. CGW

    CGW Restricted Access

    Messages:
    2,797
    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2010
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Please, not another 300 "magical thinking" posts on what ails Kodak along with home remedies.
     
  8. MaximusM3

    MaximusM3 Member

    Messages:
    756
    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2010
    Location:
    NY
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    Regardless of shooting or not shooting film, it is an absolute crying shame and disaster that such a great name and company, one of the truly greatest in the world from an historic standpoint, is going down the tubes this way. Extremely sad, really, and that's whether you love or hate Kodak.
     
  9. Athiril

    Athiril Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,887
    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2009
    Location:
    Melbourne, V
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    I don't think this is grim for the film division, I think it threatens the film division only indirectly as a result of what happens to the sinking ship part of the company.

    In any case I wrote elsewhere that;

    The article states Kodak has 19,000 worldwide employees. Nikon has estimated theirs about 25,000. Which is a comparable size. Nikon specialise in optical devices and cameras/lenses. Their public presence is basically only cameras/lenses and sporting optical devices (to a small extent, those with that interest know about it, Joe Bloggs not so much). Kodak generalise. Nikon's public presence dwarfs all of Kodak's generalisations/wide spread business.

    Canon generalise. At 2007, their number of employees was put at 130,000. I guess you could say Canon does what Kodak is/was trying to do.


    But they have more employees to put behind each branch of generalisation vs Kodak, as well as their products don't suck that much (for what they are) vs Kodak's.
     
  10. wblynch

    wblynch Member

    Messages:
    1,636
    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2009
    Location:
    Mission Viej
    Shooter:
    127 Format
    Thank the American MBA. The root of our problems since 1975.

    For such an intelligent country how can we continually produce such disastrous business managers?
     
  11. Prest_400

    Prest_400 Member

    Messages:
    626
    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2009
    Location:
    Spain
    Shooter:
    Med. Format RF
    It seems unbelievable.
    The 131 year old Yellow Giant, who pioneered film photography and became a culture icon is about to...

    I hope whatever the outcome is, it will be good for the employees and the film industry. We saw it coming, but it lived until now. Let's see what will go on.
     
  12. CGW

    CGW Restricted Access

    Messages:
    2,797
    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2010
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Thank digital technology and the MBAs on its side.

    Where have you been over the last decade?
     
  13. michaelbsc

    michaelbsc Member

    Messages:
    2,106
    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2007
    Location:
    South Caroli
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    As someone quote *ME* about this very topic recently, there is nothing illegal about being stupid. And they're clearly stupid.

    MB
     
  14. Sponsored Ad
  15. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser

    Messages:
    19,122
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2003
    Location:
    local
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    this is a long time coming ...

    sad news just the same
     
  16. lajolla

    lajolla Member

    Messages:
    48
    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2005
    Location:
    LaJolla, Cal
    Shooter:
    35mm Pan
    No panic out here on the west coast - as we are always three lucid hours behind the latest wall street anxiety. But there will be a restructuring and likely a split-up of various EK corporate components, in order to appease the big shareholders. With the share price now so low, various stock-split possibilities must be made available to these same big investors who have "hung in" while the digital efforts of EK over the last decades have proven futile. In the meantime, the traditional film and photo chemical biz have already been profitably cut to the bone and out-sourced and will likely be a prized nugget in any bankruptcy restructuring. There are any number of US and foreign companies that would jump at the chance to acquire EK's photochemical businesses. I always have thought and I have always given my humble opines here on the forum that EK should have long ago stayed away from the emerging digital world and instead should have remained focussed on what they did so well as the world-leaders in photo-chemistry. But obviously their corporate board was given some very bad advice very long ago by their own investment bankers?
     
  17. Aristophanes

    Aristophanes Member

    Messages:
    505
    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2011
    Shooter:
    35mm
    If they are exploring bankruptcy it's because their credit draw is against collateral not revenues. The foresee too little revenues to add repayment into the spreadsheet. Translation: their lenders have no faith in them. Not good.
     
  18. alanrockwood

    alanrockwood Member

    Messages:
    789
    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2006
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Regrettably, if the company's financial condition is as bad as hinted in the articles it is unlikely that the company will avoid bankruptcy. It is also unlikely that an acquisition or re-organization will save them. It will be a better deal for a potential buyer of the company or its assets to pick over the bones after the bankruptcy and get what they want at fire sale prices than to pay full price prior to a bankruptcy.
     
  19. Jeff Kubach

    Jeff Kubach Member

    Messages:
    6,932
    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2007
    Location:
    Richmond VA.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I sure hate to see that happen Kodak. I really like their products, T-Max, Tri-X, D-76, etc.

    Jeff
     
  20. aldevo

    aldevo Member

    Messages:
    895
    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2004
    Location:
    Cambridge, M
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    But the film division is doing poorly. Kodak didn't really make any money in film for the past two quarters - demand continued to decline and raw material costs skyrocketed.

    Remember - a business can report a "profit from continuing operations" for a division into which it is has to constantly poor money into downsizing in the interest of keeping it profitable. Kodak has poured billions of dollars - more than its ever lost in digital, actually - into downsizing its film operations to try to keep it profitable. And even then the incentive was, largely, to get money from tax depreciation in plant, property, and equipment - not to make profits on film.

    And you are right to be worried. I don't see anybody buying Kodak's film division - at least not with the intent of keeping production in the USA. Their current USA-based production infrastructure is far too large for current (and still-declining) market demand and carries with it potentially massive toxic tort liability.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 1, 2011
  21. aldevo

    aldevo Member

    Messages:
    895
    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2004
    Location:
    Cambridge, M
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Exactly. All their businesses are either in secular or cyclical decline.

    I think they are hoping to try to get "debtor-in-possession" financing sooner rather than later given that the global banking industry is again running off the tracks.

    I'm convinced that any financing will have to be accompanied by a restructuring plan with asset sales or shutdowns.
     
  22. Worker 11811

    Worker 11811 Member

    Messages:
    1,629
    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2010
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    To be honest, I don't perceive that Kodak makes actually any products besides film.

    Yes, I know they sell printers, inks and other digital doodads but they don't manufacture very much besides film.
    Even the pack of Kodak branded inkjet paper I have says, "Made in Germany. Finished in USA for Eastman Kodak Company."
    It says, to me that Kodak didn't make them paper themselves. They farmed it out to somebody else who stamped the Kodak brand on the finished product.

    Kodak isn't a manufacture of anything. "Kodak" is just a word that gets stamped on things. It's just a meaningless brand name.

    If something doesn't give, soon, Kodak is going to end up like Polaroid.
    The Polaroid we know doesn't exist. Polaroid went bankrupt years ago. The thing that people see, nowadays, is just a logo that some company bought the rights to use so they could stamp it on packages.

    I don't even know what company owns the Polaroid brand, anymore. I'm not sure it even matters.
    That's what's going to happen to Kodak.
     
  23. Rudeofus

    Rudeofus Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,397
    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2009
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    What you describe here has happened to quite a few very well known brands, as this article points out. Many great companies which stood for a well known and solid product lines (Polaroid being one of them listed in the article) are now only used for their brand name, under which random junk is peddled to the unsuspecting customer.
     
  24. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser

    Messages:
    19,122
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2003
    Location:
    local
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
  25. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

    Messages:
    17,523
    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2004
    Location:
    West Midland
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Kodak as a company and brand name is doomed, the film Division should be split off as a new company. The sooner that happens the better.

    Meanwhile Perez and other exectives should be thoroughly investigated for ther mis-handling of the company and it's assets and their embezzslement of funds.

    Ian
     
  26. CGW

    CGW Restricted Access

    Messages:
    2,797
    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2010
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Meanwhile Perez and other exectives should be thoroughly investigated for ther mis-handling of the company and it's assets and their embezzslement of funds.

    Right. So Perez from 2003 on singlehandedly convinced millions of consumers to abandon film for digital?