Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Kodak on the mend?

Eastman Kodak declared today that its net income showed a major upswing in the most recent quarter, thanks to increased digital sales. Kodak has long been on the decline, thanks to the rapid implosion of the analog photography business. Since 2004, it has shed over 27,000 jobs. But signs are good that the radical corporate restructuring is over and the digital strategies (including ink jet printers and color production printers) is starting to pay off.

Indeed, digital sales at Kodak surged 15%, even as analog sales mostly film) dropped 15%. According to a Wall Street Journal article, the company hopes to sell half a million ink jet printers in 2008. Other strong areas are in digital cameras sales and digital photo printing kiosks.

This is good news for Kodak, where digital now accounts for over three-quarters of revenue. But margins are still thin and the competition on all fronts (ink jets, cameras, high-end printing) is getting tougher all the time, as companies like HP, Canon, Sony, and Xerox are all on the move.

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