On the heels of a fairly lackluster display at CES 2014, Kodak finds itself in yet another hole. Brand-licensing contracts that have been made public reveal that Kodak will allow mostly anyone to use its name on their products if they’ll provide food in return. Citing profits well-below quarterly and yearly projections, Kodak is in dire straits, and its employees are hungry.
“It’s worse than we thought,” said Kodak’s CEO John Tyson over the phone. “We’ve had to cut salaries because we’re not pulling in enough, and our employees can’t eat. We’ve even had to cut Taco Tuesdays to Tortilla Tuesdays because we can’t afford the price of meat.”
Kodak’s gone to great lengths to try and revive its role in the photo industry. Following its filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, Kodak sold its film division to Kodak Pension Plan for a cool $325 million which birthed Kodak Alaris. The films are the same. The name’s just tweaked a bit.
A recent licensing deal has given rise to a spate of cameras that earned resigned shrugs from companies and websites alike. A press release with just the words “Ho hum” under official letterhead would’ve yielded a stronger response. Unfortunately, the licensed bits haven’t done much for Kodak, and it’s had a starving effect.
If you’re even remotely involved in digital imaging, you can secure Kodak’s name for your products if you vow to provide food on a consistent basis. The larger your business is, the more food you’re contractually obligated to provide. What you provide is determined before the contract is signed. If one company is providing lettuce, you can’t also provide lettuce. The healthiest lives have balanced diets, and Kodak can’t afford to have only lettuce coming in. So, it’s developed contracts of all kinds, from beef and chicken to kale and quinoa.
Until Kodak can get back on its feet, the salaries it pays its employees are wholly edible.
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