Patent lawsuits won't save Kodak from an overhaul, it seems: as predicted, the photography company just announced that it's filed for bankruptcy. Kodak says it's voluntarily filed for Chapter 11 reorganization in New York, in order to "bolster liquidity in the U.S. and abroad, monetize non-strategic intellectual property, fairly resolve legacy liabilities, and enable the Company to focus on its most valuable business lines." It's also tentatively obtained $950 million in debtor-in-possession credit so it can keep operating while it formally goes bankrupt: the company says it expects to keep paying employees, serving customers and honoring obligations for the time being.
When Kodak's talking about "valuable business," of course, it's not really referring to cameras. Chairman Antonio Perez reiterates in the press release that the company's remaining value is in intellectual property, particularly printing technologies and image capture patents. At this rate, though, that IP might get sold off cheaper: rumor had it that the company would file if it was unable to sell off its patents directly.
Kodak's set up a website at www.kodaktransforms.com to discuss the Chapter 11 filing further
, but as of right now the site's asking us for a login and password. It's up now, and you can also find the company's full press release below.
Update: Want to read Kodak's bankruptcy filing for yourself? Here's the full petition in PDF format. According to the filing, Kodak had $5.1 billion in assets and $6.75 billion in debt as of September 30th, 2011. Amusingly, the document references a rather specific claim by Nokia: apparently, the company owes $12 million to the Finnish firm for intellectual property royalties.
Update 2: Kodak's bankruptcy website is live, and the company says it expects to complete US restructuring in 2013.