In January 2018 the popular photography company Kodak announced its own blockchain platform, KODAKOne, along with a cryptocurrency KodakCoin.
It’s not unheard of for companies to pivot and adapt to capitalize on trends or new technology, however, it seems like this might be quite a step for a photography company. The Securities and Exchange Commission in the US seems to agree with the sentiment and is reportedly watching the situation closely.
Kodak was founded in 1888 and was a force to be reckoned with until the 1990’s when the sales of their photographic film. Kodak was also incredibly slow when it came to transitioning to digital photography. The company then attempted to change their strategy to focus on digital photography and digital printing. Kodak also attempted to generate revenue by aggressively suing other businesses for allegedly using their patents.
In 2012 Kodak had to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the US and later that year they announced they would stop manufacturing digital cameras, pocket video cameras and focus on business uses for their products and technologies, they also announced their intention to sell their kiosk photograph development businesses.
During this time, Kodak sold many patents to Apple, Google, Amazon, and Microsoft among other companies.
With a history riddled with bad decisions, and slow reactions to new technologies, it’s no surprise that Kodak is attempting to, for the first time in a long time, get ahead of its competitors and new startups.
The Blockchain and the Coin
Kodak calls its platform KodakOne and states that it is
“A revolutionary new image rights management and protection platform secured in the blockchain that seamlessly registers, manages and monetizes creative assets for the photographic community.”
The idea behind the platform is that photographers could use it to prove ownership of their images, use smart contracts to confirm copyrights and licensing terms and conditions to the associated images. Kodak intends on then using their cryptocurrency “KodakCoin” to pay royalties directly to the photographers via their accounting and reporting system. They intend on allowing coin holders to buy sell and book products and services. They are implying that they will be creating a marketplace which would also be able to create Kickstarter like opportunities for startups and service companies.
The delayed ICO
Kodak announced that they would be delaying their ICO which was pegged for 31 January for “several weeks” this is apparently due to the company wanting to verify the “accredited investor” statuses of their interested investors. It seems that Kodak’s ICO will not be available to anyone in the US, only those who have a joint net worth of USD 1m, an individual income in excess of $200,000.00 or a joint income of $300,000.00 in each of the two most recent years. They also state that it will be offered to select non-us persons in accordance with the applicable laws in that jurisdiction.
If you wish to express your interest in the KODAKCoin ICO, you can do so here. Please always ensure that when filling in any form for an ICO or making any purchases, that you are on the correct site as many scams have been reported.