Antonio Perez, Eastman Kodak
You have to love a willingness to stick with the girl you brought to the dance, but at the end of the day, investors don’t want to go down with a sinking ship.
Eastman Kodak (PINK:EKDKQ) was built as a camera film company, and a good one. Beginning in 2001, though, the business started to fundamentally change when digital cameras became common and photo printers followed in those footsteps. Consumers needed film less and less as the migration to at-home photography began.
Though it’s unfair to say that Eastman-Kodak missed the boat — it actually was one of the first major names to sell digital cameras and photo printers — it would be totally fair to say it didn’t even come close to staying ahead of the digital curve. Now it’s so far behind in that market, it might never catch up … and that’s assuming it manages to come out of bankruptcy relatively intact. The company announced earlier this year it would be getting out of the digital camera business, and its digital imaging patent portfolio — perhaps the last thing of value the company owns — is up for sale.