NEW YORK, Jan. 14 -- Eastman Kodak Co. said this week it will stop selling traditional film cameras in the US, Canada and Western Europe, as part of its plan to discontinue lines with declining appeal in favor of fast-growing digital products.
With sales of digital cameras poised to overtake film cameras for the first time this year, Kodak is redefining itself in an effort to keep pace, according to a Reuters report.
Kodak, the top seller of photographic film, said it will continue to sell one-time-use cameras in the West and expand its sales of these and other film-based cameras -- and film -- in emerging markets where demand is on the rise.
"Kodak is, and will remain, committed to manufacturing and marketing the world's highest quality film," said Bernard Masson, President, Digital and Film Imaging Systems, and a senior vice president at Eastman Kodak. "Consistent with our strategy, we will focus our film investments on opportunities that provide faster and attractive returns, while reducing investments where we see unsatisfactory returns."
In keeping with that approach, the company said it will increase its commitment to 35-mm reloadable camera sales and manufacturing in emerging markets, such as China, India, Eastern Europe and Latin America; introduce worldwide new high-performance 35-mm and advanced photo system (APS) films next month; continue to manufacture APS films, consistent with consumer demand; and end distribution of reloadable APS cameras worldwide and reloadable 35-mm cameras in the US, Canada, and Western Europe by the end of 2004.
Kodak announced last year that it plans to focus on high-growth digital products, such as medical imaging systems and production printing, and reduce dependence on its declining film business. Late in 2003, Kodak said it would stop making slide projectors, but still manufactures color slide films.
For more information, visit: www.kodak.com