Comment by Technology Analyst Jeff Kagan
As the traditional camera and film marketplace changed it threatens the company. We have seen them try to transition for many years. However they still are not able make the leap the way IBM changed from typewriters to computers. Other companies have successfully done this in the past.
Kodak is 131 years old. They have been through the ringer already, several times. This is just one more ride. CEO Antonio Perez seems to understand the challenge. So why isn’t the company snapping back yet?
Things change over time. Things that were hot yesterday often rise with the Wave then come down the other side and fade away.
As long as a company can create the next Wave to grow on they can continue to succeed. Kodak is still one of the strong brand names. It can transition into other businesses.
Kodak has tried for quite a long time. So far they have not succeeded.
They are currently trying to transition to printers and ink. Will they win? Will they lead?
While this may be a good segment, they are putting all their eggs in one basket. There are many similar, big name companies. Some succeed and others struggle.
They need to spread the risk around. They need to be involved with several areas. That will increase their chances of succeeding.
Currently the Kodak brand is tired. It needs to be reinvented.
This is similar to AT&T after it lost the long distance battle to the baby bells in the early 2000’s. They started out as the largest and strongest company in the world, or at least one of them. They ended up being a shadow of their former selves, dying on the vine.
AT&T was eventually acquired by SBC who also acquired BellSouth and Cingular. They went from the smaller local phone company to the largest, overnight.
Kodak has the same kind of opportunity right now. Look at the success AT&T has had. This is what you can do right now. Make lightning strike twice. This is the plan that works.
Who would it make sense to acquire? What technology area should you compete in? How can you transform yourself from small time player to industry behemoth? Printers and ink are good, but they are just one segment. What else can you compete in, both quickly and successfully? What industry segment is ripe for transformation?
These are the questions Kodak should be asking of themselves. The question we should be asking of them. The opportunities are still out there. You just have to know the right direction, aim, and fire. If you are a hunter you won’t eat unless you pull the trigger.
Let’s get on with it already Kodak. Time is ticking away. We all want you to succeed for your workers, your shareholders and the entire industry.
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Contact InformationJeff Kagan
Title: Tech Analyst
PO Box 670562
Marietta, GA 30066
Phone: 770 579 5810