Kodak files motion to auction digital imaging patents

Kodak printer Kodak is turning itself into a printing-focused company after abandoning digital camera sales

Related Stories

Eastman Kodak has sought permission to auction off more than 1,100 of its patents in an effort to save the firm.

The photography pioneer filed for bankruptcy protection in January. It stopped making digital cameras shortly afterwards.

The firm said it hoped to announce the winning bidder by 13 August.

Recent lawsuits have driven up patent prices, but a ruling last month against one of Kodak's key innovations may cause uncertainty about its portfolio.

Kodak, which now specialises in printing equipment, said that 20 parties had already shown interest in the sale.

Secret bids

A press release noted that it only planned to announce the winning bidder and the amount they had paid, so as not to expose the losing parties.

"The bidding procedures are designed to allow bidders to give us their best offers without fear of showing their cards to competitors," said the firm's chief intellectual property officer, Timothy Lynch.

"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 monetising our digital imaging patent portfolio."

The motion was filed with the US Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York. If the court approves it, the 133-year-old firm aims to split its intellectual properties into two bundles.

One portfolio will include about 700 patents covering image capture, processing and transmission technologies for digital cameras and other devices.

The other batch will include tools for image manipulation, tagging and network-based services.

Kodak said it had generated more than $3bn (£1.9bn) from licensing its innovations over the past decade.

However, some potential buyers may be wary after the US International Trade Commission issued a ruling in May saying that one of the company's "preview image" patents was invalid because of its "obviousness".

Samsung and LG had already paid $964m to use the technology and Kodak was attempting to force Apple and Research In Motion to follow.

Kodak said that it intended to appeal against the decision.

More on This Story

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

More Technology stories

RSS

Features & Analysis

  • An ant and a humanMass of bodies

    Do all the world's ants really weigh as much as all the humans?


  • Taxi in Mexico Freewheeling

    How I got my driving licence without taking a test


  • Tattooed person using tabletRogue ink

    People who lost their jobs because of their tattoos


  • Indian coupleSuspicious spouses

    Is your sweetheart playing away? Call Delhi's wedding detective


BBC Future

(USAF)

Secrets of the aircraft boneyards

The vast storage sites for surplus planes Read more...

Programmes

  • StudentsClick Watch

    Could a new social network help tailor lessons to students’ needs and spot when they fall behind?

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.