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Kodak mulls alternatives to patents auction, may form licensing company

John Ribeiro | Sept. 17, 2012
Eastman Kodak has told a bankruptcy court that it is exploring alternatives to the auction of its digital imaging patents, including keeping the patents and setting up a licensing company to repay creditors.

Kodak's patents may have been already devalued by a large number of licensing deals and litigation, which reduce the potential for new licensing deals, according to analysts.

It was also dealt a potential setback in July when the U.S. International Trade Commission affirmed a prior ruling that a Kodak patent asserted in a complaint against Apple and Research In Motion is invalid. U.S. Patent No. 6,292,218 relates to technology for previewing an image on a digital camera's LCD screen before the image is captured. Kodak has appealed the order before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.

The company has meanwhile decided to sell its personalized imaging and document imaging business, and is planning to lay off 1,000 staff by the end of this year in addition to 2,700 cuts since the beginning of 2012.

Kodak said in August it expects to complete the company's reorganization and emergence from Chapter 11 during 2013.

 

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