History in the making…
On Monday Kodak filed to the bankruptcy court for approval of bidding procedures to auction off more than 1,100 digital imaging patents. Kodak will offer 2 portfolios for auction. The Digital Capture Portfolio includes over 700 patents, covering key aspects of image capture, processing, and transmission technologies that are crucial to the design and operation of digital cameras and multi-function devices, including camera-enabled smartphones and tablets. The Kodak Imaging Systems and Services (KISS) Patent Portfolio includes over 400 patents that cover technologies including image analysis, manipulation and tagging, and network-based services, including image storage, access, and fulfillment.
Kodak says 20 potential bidders have signed confidentiality agreements and been given access to sensitive data. No disclosure of the unsuccessful bidders will be made to other bidders or the public. Only the winning bidder and the amount of the successful bid will be announced publicly at the end of the auction. Kodak expects the motion to approve bidding procedures to be heard by the Court on July 2, the auction to be held in early August, and the winning bidder to be announced by August 13. Estimates of the value of the patents range greatly from $500 million to $3 billion.
Then on Wednesday the bankruptcy Judge told Kodak that Apple will be able to go forward on their claim for some of the digital patents. The Judge also said that Kodak might be able to sell the disputed patents and put the proceeds in escrow until a court rules on whether the money should go to Apple or Kodak.
The NY State Senate and Assembly passed a bill that would provide health care if Kodak retirees were to lose it. All insurers will be able to bid for a chance to provide coverage to retirees not yet eligible for Medicare. This was done because a few months ago Kodak was planning to cut off medical benefits to retirees. Kodak has since put those plans on hold and will reevaluate medical plans in the future. The bill stills needs the signature of Gov. Cuomo.
On Tuesday Kodak announced the Kodak Scanmate i940 Scanner. The compact scanner will scan up to 20 pages per minute and convert them into dynamic digital files. The Scanmate is powered solely via the USB port on their computer. Scanned documents in Jpeg, Tiff, PDF or Word formats can be sent via email or sent to various Cloud Servers. No price was announced.
Kodak signed a new exclusive Retail Photo Services multi-year agreement with Officeworks, Australia’s largest retailer and supplier of office supplies and solutions for retail and business customers.