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Court Signs "Disappointing" $527 Million Kodak Patent Sale to Apple-Led Consortium

A court approved the purchase to a consortium that includes industry heavy weights such as Apple, Google, Samsung, RIM, Amazon, Fujifilm, Adobe, HTC, Huawei, Shutterfly, Facebook and Microsoft for a total of $527 million. The majority of the patents - a chunk of 700 documents - refer to related to digital camera LCD viewfinders, and 400 patents are related to image capture and manipulation and network-based services.

The purchase price was described as "disappointing" by judge Allan Gropper, who green-lighted the sale to allow Kodak to conclude its bankruptcy proceedings. For the consortium, the patent acquisition could be considered a bargain, given the potential damage that could have been caused, if the patents had fallen into the hands of a patent troll, which are growing stronger through their license deals.

From the buyer's perspective, however, the Kodak patents were rather expensive. At about $477,000 per patent, Google paid twice as much per patent that the amount it paid for the average Motorola patent.

"With the Court's approval of the sale of our digital imaging patent portfolio, we have achieved one of Kodak's key restructuring objectives, while positioning our Commercial Imaging business for further growth and success, and enabling Kodak to repay a substantial amount of its initial lending," Kodak said in a statement. The company aims to use the funds to provide its business with a fresh start.

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  • vaughn2k
    In the Philippines, when I was a kid, we usually called a picture taking event as 'pa-kodak', much as we called a toothpaste as 'colgate'...
    Its sad to hear that was once a globally renowned company for 130 years, suddenly took its downturn...
    Reply
  • A Bad Day
    Overvalued patents because of the broken patent system is overvalued...
    Reply
  • blurr91
    vaughn2kIts sad to hear that was once a globally renowned company for 130 years, suddenly took its downturn...
    Such is the world of business. If it can't make money, then it should go away. If it's worth whie for the consumers, then the consumers would have kept it in business. Keeping a failed venture alive with tax dollars is unconscienable.
    Reply
  • Is it possible that Apple can sue Kodak with the same patents that it acquired in some later day in the future?
    Reply
  • twelch82
    jupiter optimus maximusIs it possible that Apple can sue Kodak with the same patents that it acquired in some later day in the future?
    A license to use all of the patents they sold indefinitely is probably part of the contract. But if not, I could definitely imagine Apple doing that.
    Reply
  • ddpruitt
    vaughn2kIts sad to hear that was once a globally renowned company for 130 years, suddenly took its downturn...
    It was anything but sudden. When was the last time you remember seeing a Kodak digital camera? Exactly.

    Kodak, like Polaroid, didn't change with the times and stuck with an antiquated business. That was there downfall.
    Reply
  • southernshark
    jupiter optimus maximusIs it possible that Apple can sue Kodak with the same patents that it acquired in some later day in the future?

    Apple did not acquire patents, but merely licensed them. As Apple actually invented photography, it could use other patents of its own to go after Kodak.... even though most of those patents expired 100 years ago.
    Reply
  • bustapr
    the kodak people are idiots for actually agreeing to sell at that price. if you want $2.6b for patents and the richest companies in the world(some of which have billions to spare) are grouping together to buy them, you don't just sell them for 20% of what you wanted. no wonder they're economically screwed...
    Reply
  • happybenguy
    "For the consortium, the patent acquisition could be considered a bargain, given the potential damage that could have been caused, if the patents had fallen into the hands of a patent troll"...but I thought they did say Apple was involved..
    Reply
  • uglynerdman
    kodak should have gotten alot more in my opinion. But im sure the legal waiting fees and negotiation would take years. still not even a billion?

    i cant wait till someone patents oxygen like in example monsanto patenting all plants and were breathing their created air and we gotta pay rent.
    Reply