Kodak sells patents, Intellectual Ventures key ringleader

Summary:Is this deal a win-win. Kodak monetizes its patent portfolio and Intellectual Ventures and RPX rounds up 12 licensees for digital imaging IP.


Kodak said that it has rights to its patents to Intellectual Ventures and RPX Corp. in a deal valued at $525 million.

The deal gives Kodak more cash, allows it to reemerge from bankruptcy and set itself up to be a standalone company in the first half of 2013.

More importantly, Intellectual Ventures solidifies its role as patent kingpin. Kodak will get $525 million, which will in part be paid by 12 licensees arranged by Intellectual Ventures and RPX.

Kodak's portfolio is important since it revolves around digital imaging patents. Both Google and Apple wanted access to those patents because they play into every smartphone with a camera.

In addition, Kodak also settled any patent litigation with participants in the deal. The 12 players in the consortium weren't revealed, but given the number it most likely includes most mobile players.

Depending on who you talk to in the tech industry, Intellectual Ventures is either a patent troll or a company with a very savvy business model . There doesn't seem to be much in between.

Given the number of companies in the Kodak deal and licensees, this patent deal appears to be a win-win. 


Welcome to the patent valuation bubble


Topics: Mobility, Legal


Larry Dignan is Editor in Chief of ZDNet and SmartPlanet as well as Editorial Director of ZDNet's sister site TechRepublic. He was most recently Executive Editor of News and Blogs at ZDNet. Prior to that he was executive news editor at eWeek and news editor at Baseline. He also served as the East Coast news editor and finance editor at CN... Full Bio

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