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Kodak Files Motion to Auction Digital Patents

Photonics.com
Jun 2012
ROCHESTER, N.Y., June 14, 2012 — Eastman Kodak Co. filed a motion seeking approval of bidding procedures for the prompt bankruptcy auction of more than 1000 patents integral to the capture, manipulation and sharing of digital images, it announced Monday.

The Digital Capture and Kodak Imaging Systems and Services (KISS) patent portfolios are open to all qualified bidders, subject to procedural rules. Only the winning bidder and the amount of the successful bid will be announced publicly once the auction is complete.

The Digital Capture portfolio includes more than 700 patents covering key aspects of image capture, processing and transmission technologies that are crucial to the design and operation of digital cameras and multifunction devices, including camera-enabled smartphones and tablets. The KISS portfolio includes more than 400 patents covering technologies that include image analysis, manipulation and tagging, and network-based services, including image storage, access and fulfillment.

“The proposed structure of the auction is tailored to the special nature of the assets,” said Timothy M. Lynch, Kodak vice president and chief intellectual property officer. “In filing these proposed procedures in advance of the June 30 deadline in our lending agreement, we are moving ahead as quickly as possible with the process of monetizing our digital imaging patent portfolio.”

Lazard, Kodak’s financial advisor, has conducted an extensive marketing process for these assets over the past 12 months. To date, 20 parties have signed confidentiality agreements and have provided access to an electronic data room.

Since 2001, Kodak has generated more than $3 billion from licensing its digital imaging portfolio to industry leaders, including Samsung, LG, Motorola and Nokia, and is currently pursuing patent litigation against infringers that include Apple, RIM, and HTC. (See: Kodak Trims Units, Files Lawsuits) Earlier this year, the company transferred its US and Canada Kodak Gallery online photo service customers to Shutterfly. (See: Kodak Selling Online Photo Service to Shutterfly)

The company 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 Aug. 13.

For more information, visit: www.kodak.com


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