Kodak files for bankruptcy

19 Jan 2012

Kodak has confirmed it has filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. It will continue to operate as normal during this filing, aiming to restructure the company.

In its announcement, Kodak said it will make money by selling off some of its intellectual property, resolve legacy liabilities and focus on its most valuable business lines. It hopes to complete this filing by 2013, aiming to become a much leaner digital imaging and material science company.

It has obtained a US$950m debtor-in-possession from Citigroup to keep it operating and it expects to be able to pay wages, benefits and customer programmes. It will also honour obligations to suppliers and said its subsidiaries outside the US are not subject to these proceedings.

“After considering the advantages of chapter 11 at this time, the board of directors and the entire senior management team unanimously believe that this is a necessary step and the right thing to do for the future of Kodak,” said Antonio M Perez, chairman and CEO of Kodak.

“Our goal is to maximise value for stakeholders, including our employees, retirees, creditors and pension trustees. We are also committed to working with our valued customers,” said Perez.

The pioneering company has been in business for 131 years, founded by George Eastman. It once sold 90pc of film across the globe, but struggled when the popularity of digital photography arose.

Since 2003, it has closed 13 manufacturing plants and 130 processing labs, and reduced its workforce by 47,000 people.