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New Kodak Campaign Emphasizes Digital Direction

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August 18, 2005 – Tonight Kodak will launch a deluge of advertising aimed at transforming the company’s image into a top tier digital imaging company. The effort comes as Kodak has seen its brand identity slip as consumers shift away from film, a mainstay of the company for over 100 years.

For the first time in the company’s history, Kodak is marketing itself as a unified digital imaging provider rather than focusing its advertising efforts on a particular unit or product line. "This is the first time Kodak is pulling it all together into an integrated approach," said Dave Lanzillo, a spokesman for the company.

The advertisements are just one part of the re-branding campaign. Kodak is also redirecting their marketing efforts towards corporate customers of medical imaging equipment and publishing tools.

Kodak’s new campaign comes as the value of the company’s brand is slipping. The value of Kodak’s brand was estimated at $5 billion this year, according to the annual Interbrand Co./Businessweek top 100 global brand ranking. Kodak’s estimated value in 2000 was $11.8 billion.

While Kodak’s line of EasyShare digital cameras, first introduced in 2001, has accounted for 22.1 percent of camera sales in the United States last year, the increasing popularity has not freed the company from financial troubles. The company posted an $87 million dollar lost last year and most recently saw its corporate credit rating reduced to junk bond status.

Since 2000, the imaging industry has changed drastically with digital technology moving rapidly to the forefront. Kodak has followed lockstep with the industry, shifting its consumer line, along with its medical imaging and publishing products, towards digital technology. For the first time in Kodak’s history, earnings from digital products exceeded film-based equipment, but the company’s brand identity in recent years has not reflected this, something the new campaign attempts to address. "We are refreshing the brand to reflect changes that have already taken place in the company," said Lanzillo.

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