Kodak Exits

Discussion in 'Product Availability' started by kjsphoto, Oct 15, 2007.

  1. kjsphoto

    kjsphoto Subscriber

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  2. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    It's the statement "The company, based in Rochester, N.Y., is getting out of film products and moving into the digital world, and with that comes a new marketing approach, the company said in a statement yesterday." that is most disturbing.

    It doesn't make sense when you put that against the recent launch of the new version of Tmax 400 and their press statements.

    Perhaps we might see the Silver based side of the business split from the parent company, and left to sink or swim on its own.

    Ian
     
  3. Jedidiah Smith

    Jedidiah Smith Member

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    Well...at 55 to 65 million $ to keep that slot, and with a shrinking film market?
    I'd exit too. Spend that money on other marketing avenues to reach out to traditionalist film users. I think they need to stress the art, look, feel, archivalness, etc of film if they want sales to increase again. Heck, just come out with a killer TV ad that stresses "being different - show your personality - be a leader - shoot film"...and they'll get quite a few of the younger crowd interested in film!
    Almost all the olympic shooters will be using high end DSLRs in blast mode anyway. How does Kodak Film fit in as a sponsor any more?
    Jed
     
  4. juan

    juan Subscriber

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    I'd question some of the statements made by the reporter - especially those indicating that Kodak is getting out of film altogether. This seems to be a story about Kodak exiting the Olympics with a bunch of reporter foolishness thrown in.
    juan
     
  5. clay

    clay Subscriber

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    All the article says is that Kodak is in the process of moving from film to digital. Doesn't imply anything other than a change in emphasis. And frankly it is good they are, otherwise there would be no Kodak left right now to make anything. With the drop in demand for film, if they had done nothing, they would be bankrupt by now.

     
  6. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    It appears the reporter read Kodak's Elizabeth Noonans statement fairly literally "As we complete the transformation of Kodak, it makes sense for us to take a new direction," Noonan said. "Digital technology changes everything, including the way we market our products and services"

    but then she says "the company is committed to a digitally oriented growth strategy focused on helping people better use meaningful images and information in their life and work."

    Those are from Kodak's own Press Release, Ms Noonan is Director of Kodak's Brand Management.

    Ian
     
  7. Christopher Nisperos

    Christopher Nisperos Member

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    Very good point, Juan. In fact, who knows what the real story is?
    Kodak does, that's who. What is utterly asinine is that Kodak has not followed the excellent example given by Harman Technologies (in the person of Simon Galley) in choosing to respond directly to the consumer right here on this very forum (among the other important photographic forums).

    They could squash any untrue rumor at all —or diffuse useful information— without spending one. damned. penny. I resist calling names, but it seems to me that this lack of vision smacks of stupidity. Again. .. or still.

    Get with it, Kodak. Isn't thirty years of dumb moves enough?

    . . . . . .
     
  8. aldevo

    aldevo Member

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    So, they're ending their Olympic sponsorship? Big deal. I doubt they're the only N. American-based company that will stop after Beijing in 2008.

    Almost every article in the past 5 years has cited the "transformation".

    Nothing new here that I can see. We know where the company's future emphasis will lie because there's no chance that any manufacturer can grow a film business very far.
     
  9. fschifano

    fschifano Member

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    Bad journalism, if you ask me. The journalist leaves you with the impression that Kodak is exiting the film business when just a few days earlier we read in a press release from Kodak about a newly reformulated TMax 400 film.
     
  10. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    No, it's not bad journalism at all. If you read the whole of the Kodak press release, which I have, you'd see that it is so heavily implied. The journalist says "getting out of" that doesn't quite mean exiting but then we all know that Kodak is having to re-invent itself. Kodak should learn from it's rival Fuji who are stating they are still committed to film.

    There does seem to be something seriously wrong with Kodak's marketing and publicity.

    Ian
     
  11. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    Kodak is not getting out of the film business. Not when it represents 50% of its income! That would be a foolish move.

    They are simply not sponsoring the Olympics after the current contract is up, which means that they are no longer the 'official film of the Olympics'.

    Their method of reporting it and stating it is certainly skewed.

    PE
     
  12. copake_ham

    copake_ham Inactive

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    I concur with the others who've noted that the reporter added in a subjective personal opinion regarding "getting out of the film business". The only objective fact reported was that they were dropping their Olympics sponsorship.
     
  13. Dorian Gray

    Dorian Gray Member

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    I think Kodak's marketing problem is that they're not getting the respect they believe they deserve in the digital arena, so they feel they have to constantly remind everyone that they're metamorphosing from a colossal film giant into a lithe digital company. The mistake in that approach is that nobody cares what they're changing from or to. People care what they are now. If they offer film products, then they should tell us that directly. If they offer digital products, then they must tell us that directly. They should quit blathering on about transition periods and changes of emphasis and the great white hope of the future. It alienates the hardcore film users who take every marketing statement literally, and it does nothing for the digital buyers who're interested in what's currently in the shops.

    The best thing Kodak could do for digital marketing is release a high-end SLR with a full-frame sensor and at least one unique virtue (perhaps 30-megapixel resolution or something like that). At present, as far as the digital consumer is concerned, Kodak is represented by a great fleet of mediocre digital compacts, each with a token gimmicky feature. Nobody cares! Canon's pro SLRs are worth a fortune in marketing exposure. The whole world believes Canon symbolises quality, which allows them to sell rubbish cameras with a fat profit margin at the cheap end, because people will buy them anyway. Nikon did the same for decades. If Kodak did so they would no longer have to harp on about their digital future at every opportunity, because the SLR would make that statement clear to the whole world. And few film users would take offence at a DSLR in the line-up if Kodak kept churning out the celluloid.
     
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  15. gr82bart

    gr82bart Member

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    Not just the reporting in the article, which by the way was a Canadian newspaper so it's no wonder they got it wrong :D , but I would have to say the title of this thread leaves people to fill in the gaps - and we know what happens when APUGers fill in gaps of information ...

    The news is no news to me. The thread is another opportunity to bash Kodak. Have at it.

    Regards, Art.
     
  16. rusty71

    rusty71 Member

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    Considering all of the doping scandals in the last two Olympics, perhaps Kodak feels that a Big Pharmacy company would be a more appropriate sponsor!
    Newspaper articles are rarely correct. About the only fact we can take from this is that Kodak is no longer supporting the IOC's corrupt olympic games.
     
  17. copake_ham

    copake_ham Inactive

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    Yes, but you also just added in a subjective opinion by including the word "corrupt". :D
     
  18. fotch

    fotch Member

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    I remember seeing a sign in a resort tavern years ago that read:
    "If your so damm smart, how come your not rich?"

    Makes you wonder about all those giving opinions on what Kodak (or any company) should do or must do to improve.

    Kodak has my support. If they have a good product (and they do in film) I will buy it. My first digital camera was a Kodak (DC120) and the longer I used it, the more dissatisfied I became.

    Kodak was an is a great company. Long live the king.
     
  19. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    One or two posters have realised what the Kevin the OP meant, except Ron (PE) & Dorian Gray.

    Personally I use Kodak B&W film, and want them to keep manufacturing. But inept Press Releases do Kodak no favours, the fact that a reporter can say "getting out of film" is because that was the tone of Kodak's wording.

    As Ron (PE) says Kodak are still very reliant on film sales, and all we are saying is poorly written Press Release can only do the company harm.

    Ian
     
  20. rusty71

    rusty71 Member

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    Unfortunately not if you've been following the headlines:

    BBC Documentary on IOC Corruption
     
  21. Photo Engineer

    Photo Engineer Subscriber

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    In response to Ian's comment, here are some additions of my own for everyone interested.

    Dorian Gray has painted a very accurate picture of some of the feeling inside Kodak. (sorry for the literary allusion here)

    Kodak strives for excellence and makes some of the finest large sensors for digital, but hardly anyone knows how much technology out there comes from Kodak in the digital world. Of course, we refrain from talking about it on APUG as it is a verboten subject. In the 80s, Kodak was 10 years ahead of most Japanese R&D in digital, but Kodak elected not to sell anything until it was nearly too late.

    But OTOH, when they made 35 mm sized full screen sensors into a high end digital camera, they were too soon with too much and had insufficient support infrastructure.

    In addition, to add insult to injury, at the Atlanta Olympics the press used the 35mm full frame Kodak digital cameras and found them to be excellent. The problem was that for the first few hours, the OS/2 based network used by Kodak would not work. IBM had a glitch.

    So, that and other problems marred Kodak's entry into the high end field. (along with cameras that didn't work correcty, cameras that were too slow, cameras that used up batteries, glitchy software that erased the Windows config.sys when installed, and one entire support group quitting within one month to go to better pastures - see below on this)

    I saw that Kodak was not a 'digital' or 'computer software' company at heart, and this was the source of some of these problems. In my own area, I said often "we do not know how to manage software development!"

    There are many many painful stories I could tell you about Kodak's startup attempts in this area, and how pained they felt internally. It is no wonder that they hired Perez. Among other things, what engineeer would want to work in Rochester. They could be in Texas or Calif. Perez has been able to reverse that trend. We kept losing key digital people. Now, many of them are promoted internally from analog areas and retrained as needed.

    Bashing Kodak and anything leading to decreasing sales will leave future developments (another pun?) to Fuji and Ilford. I am fully aware that these companies are very high calibre, but is the withdrawal of Kodak what you want? Truly?

    Kodak has pioneered many major film and paper improvements through the years including the latest that you are now using, 2e senstization. This required years and millions of dollars in investment starting nearly 20 years ago and continuing to the present. The huge film sales during that time was what funded the R&D.

    If we lose Kodak, I think that for the most part, we will then see digital take over motion picture. Fuji products will not be a major contributor to filming in the US or probably Bollywood. I know that Fuji sells camera and print films, but their sales are miniscule beside Kodak's mopic film sales. Without these sales, color will go downhill in terms of R&D. Ilford does not make it and Agfa is pretty much frozen. I doubt if Fuji will have the ability to budget big changes. They have nothing like 2e sensitization and unless they license it from Kodak, they will have to do the R&D themselves on an alternative.

    I buy Ilford and Kodak products. All color film is Kodak and 1/2 of my B&W film is Ilford. I use Ilford and Kentmere paper. I'm trying to support my favorites. And, I would not knock any one of those 3, nor would I knock any of the others unless there is a quality issue raised here that I might shed light on.

    PE
     
  22. Paul Howell

    Paul Howell Member

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    Kodak has been shooting itself in the foot for several years, on one hand it keeps telling us that it is committed to film and at least color paper, then on the other hand some idiot tossed out a press release that was not well thought out. I dont know that the grand scheme is, but p####ing off or scaring its analog customers is not helpful.
     
  23. HerrBremerhaven

    HerrBremerhaven Member

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  24. Photo Engineer

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    Gordon;

    It isn't any surprise to me either, and may explain why Kodak does not visit APUG visibly. They are tired of the verbal abuse. Yes, they can do things better, but I'm sure that both Ilford and Kentmere could do things differently in some areas as could Fuji.

    These people have to remember that while trying to stay in the film business to supply them with analog products, Kodak sales dropped 90%! They are therefore in rather difficult shape trying to keep their heads above water while trying to move to digital and at the same time to try to supply new and improved quality analog products.

    PE
     
  25. copake_ham

    copake_ham Inactive

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    Actually, I don't think anyone in this thread has been bashing Kodak at all. Now the reporter for the Globe and Mail has taken a hell of a trashing - but it's well-deserved.

    But, this thread does remind me I want to pick up a couple of rolls of 135 Portra for our upcoming weekend trip down to Maryland. :wink:
     
  26. Helcio Tagliolatto

    Helcio Tagliolatto Member

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    It's a pleasure to read your comments, PE. They are always correctly written!

    Helcio