Kodak snaps and files for bankruptcy

KODAK’S moment has come to an end, as the company yesterday admitted defeat in the face of an increasingly digital age by filing for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

Citigroup has thrown the dwindling company a $950m (£614m) lifeline to support Kodak through its ongoing operations, which will continue despite the bankruptcy application.

Kodak subsidiaries outside of the US are not included in the bankruptcy.

After 131 years in the camera industry, the pioneering business warned at the end of last year it would run out of cash unless it were able to sell the 1,100 digital patents it has been trying to offload since the summer.

Despite inventing the digital camera, the New York based company has struggled to keep up with the changing consumer market since demand for photographic film, its core product, has waned.

The bankruptcy will help Kodak develop its printing technologies and enhance revenues from its digital patents, the company said in a statement.

To this end Kodak has already axed 47,000 jobs in the last decade and shut down 13 factories and 130 labs.

Chief executive Antonio Perez said: “Kodak is taking a significant step toward enabling our enterprise to complete its transformation. [We] believe that this is a necessary step and the right thing to do for the future of Kodak.”

The camera company also announced a legal challenge against Samsung, Apple and HTC on claims they infringed several digital patents.

FAST FACTS | EASTMAN KODAK

● When the first American astronaut orbited Earth in 1962, Kodak film recorded his journey.
● Kodak’s pervasiveness of the camera industry was such that the phrase “Kodak moment” has entered the common lexicon.