Kodak News; April 2 – 6, 2012

Kodak sign in Times Square

On Monday the Dayton Business Journal reported that Kodak would laying off 68 people by April 19 at the Kettering plant in suburban Dayton. Kodak has 570 employees at the Kettering plant which makes commercial inkjet printers for printing up to 4000 pages a minute.

On Wednesday WHAM-TV reported that Carestream Health, a tenant of Eastman Business Park expressed serious concerns about the future of the complex. The complex is attractive to tenants because of Kodak’s power plant but that power plant needs a $40 million upgrade. Kodak’s bankruptcy has thrown into doubt that the needed work will be done in time to meet updated federal standards in 2014. Carestream, who markets dental and x-ray film made by Kodak, has hundreds of workers at Eastman Business Park. Plus there are around 34 other businesses leasing space in Eastman Business Park.

At Bankruptcy Court in NYC, Kodak withdrew its motion to eliminate medical coverage for Medicare eligible retirees (ie. over 65). Kodak and members from the retiree organization, EKRA, will be forming a committee to determine the future of those medical benefits. EKRA says that it may take 6 months to a year to reach an agreement.

Kodak asked the Bankruptcy Court for permission to sell the lease on their sign in Times Square to Orange Barrel Media for a payment of $3.7 million.

On Thursday the Department of Labor reported 95 people will lose their jobs at Kodak in June. 91 of the layoffs will be at Eastman Eastman Business Park, 1 at the Research Labs and 3 at Kodak Office. Kodak said these layoffs are part of the layoffs already previously announced. This would bring the number of Kodak employees in Rochester down to about 5000.

Also on Thursday Kodak asked the Bankruptcy Court for permission to pay about 300 key managers and other employees a total of $13.5 million in bonuses to keep them from leaving the company. The filing says that 119 managers would get 35% of their salary for an average of $71,000+ and the remaining selected employees would get 25% of their salary.  In making its case for the bonuses, Kodak says the targeted employees have knowledge and skills critical to help the business emerge from the bankruptcy.