Kodak to exit inkjet printing

After six years at the forefront of the fledgling high speed inkjet web business, Kodak is selling its high speed inkjet business springing a surprise on the industry. The company is planning to divest its inkjet business as soon as possible, and is currently in talks with rival developers and their financiers over a sale.

Let go: Kodak to sell of its high speed inkjet web business

Let go: Kodak to sell of its high speed inkjet web business

Kodak has provided no names of possible purchasers. Among the contendors will be Ricoh, HP, Konica Minolta, Canon, Screen and Fuji Xerox, who all have their own systems, however EFI is also likely to be in the frame to buy, as it is cash rich, acquisition hungry, but has no inkjet web of its own. Kodak says further development of its inkjet platforms Prosper, Stream and Ultrastream – which will be launched at drupa – will be best handled by a new owner which has ‘a larger sales and distribution channel.’ There are probably less than 50 Prosper printing lines in use around the world, in Australia SOS Print + Media has a monochrome version. There are none in Germany, a handful in the UK, and two each in France and Italy. The sale of inkjet will leave Kodak with its offset plates and CTP business, which is not going to grow, and its packaging plates and CTP business which has room for growth, and its NexPress toner based digital press.  

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