Kodak

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nickrapak
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Re: Kodak

Post by nickrapak » Sun Oct 02, 2011 4:19 am

retrogrouch wrote:This is a major bummer. I am glad to hear that Fuji is still doing well. The "hard core " photo shop here in Vancouver started selling more film recently, as Costco etc. got out of the business. It would be great if the market share are all combined into one outfit. The weather here is fittingly gray and dark, but I thought I would celebrate film by doing some test shots. (2 1/3 to 4 :( ) then my spot meter crapped out...

I would not by any means say that Fuji is doing well. Since 2007, their stock has dropped in value from 5590 JPY to 1815, a decrease of 67.5%. Granted, it's not Kodak's 97%, but saying that Fujifilm is a healthy company is far from the truth.

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Re: Kodak

Post by retrogrouch » Sun Oct 02, 2011 5:54 am

Oh... So much for plan A: blind optimism. Maybe it is time to to dust off plan B- start amassing a hoard of 8mm ammo that by shear tonnage would impress a Branch Davidian waiting for the ATF.... Bucket developing, here we come. Seriously, though, I feel bad for the nice people at places like Dwayne's, and all the people a Kodak who might loose their jobs.

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Re: Kodak

Post by MIKI-814 » Sun Oct 02, 2011 1:10 pm

I totally agree with aj.

We are mixing news here... the problem with Kodak stock values is one thing, and the profitable of the film business and future of the film business is another one. In the worst case where Kodak passed away, the profitable film business would of course be sold to make money. The Ilford/Kentmere case is a big example in film business.

We will have film for many years to come because lot of film is used and sold today very profitably, so will have Super8 too in one way or another. RELAX!

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Re: Kodak

Post by CinemanUK » Sun Oct 02, 2011 4:36 pm

I too am not convinced that there is a crisis, though I am sure that we would all agree that the sooner it becomes clear that the future of Kodak is secure, the better.

In the present world economic situation, share values are in very stormy waters and many have fallen by very considerable amounts.

A number of factors determine if and when a company fails, and whilst returning losses is undoubtedly one of them, the most important one is the extent to which there exists a perception that the Company is able to reverse them. Confidence, too, is very important, and the value of the asset base of the Company is highly relevant to this, as is the level of resources available to it whilst it is addressing loss making.

I have seen little to indicate that Kodak is not going to be able achieve profitability, nor that the Company does not have the asset base, resources or ability to see itself through the "stormy waters" it is presently navigating.

I do believe, therefore, that instead of dwelling on the "dark side" of things, we should be sending the message that we wish the Company well.

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Re: Kodak

Post by Shanec8mm » Sun Oct 02, 2011 5:12 pm

CinemanUK, I agree, I think we can do more to create a positive attitude towards Kodak. Those of us that use film need to show our support for Reg 8, Super 8, 16mm, and 35mm. Last night after I read this post I felt so guilty I ordered a roll of reg 8 film from Dwayne's LOL. Now I know 1 roll hardly makes a dent, but it was a purchase, and every purchase adds up. Also I think we can do more to promote film. More discussions, etc. Helping to keep the base energized sells film. I think forums for movie film in general have trailed off in recent years. I'm sure there is still quite a bit of people using movie film, however it's hard to really know. It would seem that besides buying, and shooting more movie film, advertising would also help in some way. My facebook page is currently linked to different film pages that I regular share with my 400 plus Internet idiot friends LOL. Not saying it's helping but it does get the idea planted.

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Re: Kodak

Post by David M. Leugers » Sun Oct 02, 2011 8:08 pm

From the time I purchased my first film camera (a used Bolex B-8) I have experienced superb customer service from dedicated employees of Kodak. Who can forget the late John Pytlak who used to join in here and other film related
web sites? There were, and are, passionate film personnel working for Kodak and we owe them a great deal of
gratitude for us being able to shoot 8mm, S-8mm and 16mm film today. I am concerned as much for them as I am for
us film shooters. While the film studios are getting their wet dream of doing away with film prints with digital projection rapidly taking over the industry, this has caused a major loss of revenue for Kodak and is putting many of the remaining film labs out of business. It may soon be impossible to shoot a movie on film and have a film print made in 35mm. The goal is by 2013 (just over a year away) there will be no 35mm film prints made. Our loss is their loss, I won't be attending any theaters by then as I refuse to pay to see any more digital projection. Worse yet are "films" shot on digital. Kodak's product line has never been better. The ability as amateurs to shoot archival quality images on inherently beautiful and distinct products can not be undervalued. I believe Kodak has a viable future, but in a smaller footprint and organization. I hope the in-house film fans can win out and keep the film production lines running.

For the past twenty years I have purchased all of my R-8mm film stock from John Schwind. When Kodak stopped R-8mm film production in 1991 I was thoroughly bummed out. Because of John's efforts I have been able to keep shooting without stop. THANKS!

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Re: Kodak

Post by jpolzfuss » Sun Oct 02, 2011 9:48 pm

sk360 wrote:If Kodak years ago would of started an affordable service that would include processing...
In 1954 Kodak was forced in an antitrust case not to sell their films "process paid" any more in the USA. And Kodak was forced to license the color finishing process to third parties. .. was Kodak also forced to give up their labs back then? And is that decree still in effect?
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Re: Kodak

Post by Scotness » Sun Oct 02, 2011 10:39 pm

Here's an update of sorts - it says they have hired lawyers specialising in bankruptcy but don't intend to go bankrupt!

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-15141421
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Re: Kodak

Post by MIKI-814 » Tue Oct 04, 2011 10:33 am

Kodak did very well indeed yesterday and no one has comments on this...

Please update all your pesimistic moods & news! :o

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Re: Kodak

Post by Roster » Tue Oct 04, 2011 10:06 pm

MIKI-814 wrote:Kodak did very well indeed yesterday and no one has comments on this...

Please update all your pesimistic moods & news! :o
Who says Kodak did very well yesterday? Operationally, they are still bleeding cash. As of yesterday, their on-hand cash balance was approximately half what it was at the end of last year. Not good.

Yes, their stock price increased 72% yesterday to $1.34 from .78 but this was a market reaction to Kodak's announcement that it had no intention to file for bankruptcy (subtext... at this point in time). The market had high expectations that Kodak was going to file for bankruptcy at this point in time but because they announced the exact opposite, this resulted in a rise in its stock price. Tentative optimism that Kodak might still effect a turnaround.

Kodak hired a firm specifically to help restructure and turnaround the Company and hopefully avoid bankruptcy. I've been involved in business turnarounds and restructurings. It's always painful and it doesn't always succeed. It's like the surgeon who has to cut off a patient's leg or arm (and maybe additional appendages) in order to save the patient. Sometimes the patient still dies.

Labor is huge cost. So expect more job cuts.

But what about the film business part of Kodak? We know that the sales volume of film has dropped precipitously over the last five to ten years and is fully expected to continue to decline, although maybe not as rapidly as the past several years. I've heard Kodak say its film business is still profitable and yet in yesterday's Wall Street Journal Kodak restated this to say that the film business unit lost the least amount of money of all its business units. My guess is that the gross profits on film sales are still healthy despite shrinking sales volume but when you allocate all the overhead expenses that support the film business unit you end up with a net loss.

Assuming the turnaround plan does not include selling off the film business unit, the first thing the plan will do is slash as much of the overhead expenses as possible (admin staff, sales, marketing, customer service, etc.).

But the plan is also going to have to look at the gross margins produced by each individual film product still in production. And all low margin products will probably be eliminated. Keep the high margin products and milk them for all their worth while there is still a market for film and until Kodak has no choice but to get out of the film business entirely (assuming it survives as a going entity).

So what is Super 8?

I'm no expert and I have no inside knowledge. But I suspect its a low volume low margin product (well, we know its low volume). I imagine the costs of producing 50 feet of Super 8 (including slitting, cartridging, packaging) has to be higher than 50 feet of 16mm or 35mm of the same emulsion.

So where does this leave us? I don't know about you but it does leave me worried about Super 8.

It's my sincerest hope that Super 8 does survive somehow. Like all of you, I just enjoy shooting it and want to continue shooting for years to come.

I learned recently that one of Nikon's very last 35mm still cameras (FM-10) is not produced by Nikon at all. It is made by Cosina. But it is sold and marketed by Nikon. Perhaps Kodak might set up a similar arrangement for Super 8 and eventually all film stocks if it decided to get out of the manufacturing side of the business. I don't know. It sure would be great to hear from industry insider.

Hello? Any industry insiders?
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Re: Kodak

Post by Mr Blackstock » Tue Oct 04, 2011 11:52 pm

I am not an industry insider, but I think things will turn out o.k. I imagine that Kodak are talking to the firm that help companies restructure because it may be facing a huge choice- that it may have to sell off parts of the company to remain alive, ie keeping the digital and film side, but outsourcing the manufacturing to countries that have cheaper labour, ie China. Outsourcing may not be as bad as you think, Chinese manufactoring now has some of the highest quality standards among the world.

If Kodak do discontinue small format manufacture, I imagine there are lots of small companies who would jump at the chance to start producing their own carts loaded with their own film, Kodak leaving the market in this way would leave a large gap that smaller companies would at last be able to compete in.

Maybe Kodak hung on for too many years as a giant company after the boom times of the 80's, and failed to see the writting on the technological wall, it has happened to many companies over the years, they can grow massive very quickly, but if the market faults in any way, it can take the company years to re-adjust.

Either way I think small format shooters in the northern hemisphere are going to shooting Super8 for awhile yet, south of the equator? I went to http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/buy/Movie ... 4277998822 to see the price of film, $16.95 for 100D is pretty good, but the cheapest post to Australia was $43! As it stands in Aussie at the moment, it almost costs $90USD to buy, process, and transfer one cart. If smaller companies step into any void left by Kodak, you guys might be looking at similar pricing...

Good luck up there...
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Re: Kodak

Post by Pj » Tue Oct 04, 2011 11:56 pm

This is a recession and times are tough for everyone and apparently there's lots more difficult times ahead. All kinds of companies are suffering. I don't think Kodak is going anywhere, one of Kodak's problem's is that it's just too big, it's a very, very big company employing thousands people.

The use of film is still huge and throughout the world industries other than Hollywood use lots of film and rely on film. For example the Indian film industry produces between 800 to 1000 films every year, there the dependence on film is growing as everyone uses 35mm. I believe as long as there is film there will be someone loading it in Super 8 cartridges. All this pessimism and speculating is not good.

P

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Re: Kodak

Post by MIKI-814 » Wed Oct 05, 2011 9:50 am

Roster wrote:Who says Kodak did very well yesterday? Operationally, they are still bleeding cash. As of yesterday, their on-hand cash balance was approximately half what it was at the end of last year. Not good.
The reason by this post was created was due to dramatic drop in the stock market and the rumours of banktrupcy in the past days, which appeared in the mass media all over the world. Now this concrete situation reverted in 24 hours.

Concerning the general issue of film sales dropping in the past years due to the digital stuff, that's true but it's something which everybody is/were aware of (Kodak knows of course) so it makes no news. Dropping sales does not mean by any chance that a product could not be profitable if the company adjusts itself along the process. And we all know that Kodak has been closing plants and firing thousands of workers to cope with that. Too sad for workers but good for film.

Ok, Kodak won't be the big K anymore with billions of workers... so what?

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Re: Kodak

Post by wahiba » Thu Oct 06, 2011 9:18 am

If Ilford can survive, albit via a few different owners then I expect Kodak will.

Maybe they ought to follow Ilford's back to basics approach - they have just brought out a pin-hole camera!

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