Kodak Film Sales

Discussion in 'Film and Processing' started by dave_b|15, Oct 4, 2010.

  1. I've been watching the photographic film industry for a couple of years. It's an incredible example of what the economists call "disruptive technology" with regards to what's happening to film because of digital.
    The graphs show what has been happening with Kodak's film sales for the last few years. The first graph is the Film, Photofinishing and Entertainment Group which Kodak created in 2007 for reporting reasons. A couple of years before that, they started to break out films sales - hence why there isn't expenses related to the 2004 & 2005 years - those numbers weren't available. Those numbers include the movie film business.
    Kodak is the film market leader for most of the World so their performance is a pretty good bellwether for the entire industry. What's happening to them is pretty much happening to everyone.
    Assuming that their direct and indirect cost structure stays the same, FPEG will go into the red sometime between 2015 and 2017. Of course, Kodak could offshore everything, sell off the film stuff and licenses the "Kodak" name, or just shut the thing down. I can't read their minds and I don't know how much more expenses they can cut, but it doesn't look good.
    I've also been looking at FUJIFILM and they aren't doing much better and all through out their reports they mention "divestitures". They're vague about what those divestitures are, but I'm assuming it's film assets.
  2. I actually wonder if film users would pay more if film had cost more. Would Kodak end up being a Poloroid?
  3. Oh Prophet of doom I see the gloom and in my heart I have no digital room. :)
  4. Kodak Film Sales (in green)
    (1) It looks like the glide path of the space shuttle landing in Florida.
    (2) It looks like the my dropping savings each year:)
    (3) It looks like the drop in dialup usage.
  5. Or also the GNP of America.
  6. What is Ailing Kodak (1997):
  7. Old news... real old.
  8. There's also a marked drop in new house sales. So I guess we all like living in apartments don't we. We love it right?
  9. But a blip on the chart, for the newest data, is still about $100m.
  10. If on Jan 2, 1970 you spent 35.68 bucks on Philip Morris stock; you would have 100 shares; today worth 2383 bucks; if one spent every dividend check.
    If on Jan 2, 1970 you spent 35.68 bucks on Eastman Kodak stock; you would have 1.0376 shares; today worth 4.11 bucks; if one spent every dividend check.
    With the EK stock; one could sell it today and buy a Big Mac; or a roll of film; game is over.
    With the MO stock; one could keep it and buy a Big Mac; or a roll of film every 10 days with the dividends; ie 152 bucks per year; ie 6.40 percent of the stocks value
    With the EK stock; one could keep it and live off the dividend; which is zero.
    Adjusted for splits MO Jan 2 1970 was 0.3568; today is 23.68; dividend 1.52 per share
    Adjusted for splits EK Jan 2 1970 was 34.6837; today is 3.96; dividend zero
    To have the same 4.11 bucks today in MO stock (as the EK stocks worth today) ;
    you would have have to spent 6 cents on MO stock it back in Jan 2 1970; maybe a postage stamp
  11. I guess I would rather have a roll of film then a pack of cigarettes. I do remember 1970 however. I could shoot a roll of B/W film and have it processed for $1.00 at Fort Benning in the PX. I still have some of the pictures.
  12. I think this is more about scale. Yes if you looked at Kodak as an island and factor in that their major business is still moves, that (i would imagine) is their cost of production. Consumer market is still small for them. I don't think companies like Ilford or Foma would fear too much of the demise of Kodak's film production. They are smaller scale and more efficient at what they do. They would survive and so would the film. That is more of the reality.
  13. No getting around it film sales are tanking badly the past ten years.Then again have you looked at higher end digital SLR sales for Canon & Nikon lately - the economy is bad all over and taking a toll on everything photographic (except maybe cellphone cameras).Kodak's best hope is Fuji throws in the towel before they do and they pick up that share like what happened when Agfa went belly up.Someone will remain and I hope it will be Kodak for at least another decade.A all digital world will be a very strange and uncomfortable place for many people who love the art of photography.
  14. Kodak's already taking the C-41 professional market from Fuji. Fuji meanwhile is probably winning in the E-6 market.
    Challenge for Kodak is that they can't reduce their costs much more. They only have 25% of the original R&D staff. They can't afford to build new film lines optimized for smaller runs. It takes so many people to keep the machines running and happy.
    Biggest way to help Kodak is to convince movie theaters that digital projection stinks, to get their movies on film prints. That's Kodak's bread and butter business, what keeps the lines humming. Far more than 50% of their total film sales are "Eastman Color Print".
  15. All we can do is keep supporting Kodak film and this will eventually level off. Let's stop worrying and shoot! "Use it or loose it"!
  16. Support both Fuji and Kodak. I on the other hand support Arista Premium. :)
  17. Kodak had a digital camera in 1991; are they making a profit with digital yet?
    Fuji is not throwing in the towel; they bagged Walmart; Kodak is not sold there anymore; probably over pricing
    In still Photography; the bulk of film sold is dumb C41 400 and 800 iso stuff to Joe Six Pack; few pros shoot C41 or E6. Wedding folks shot gobs of C41 two decades ago; I shot a lot of E6 until the local lab died; then I got a digital scan back.
    I invested 10 years ago in digital projector and lost money; now local places use them
    Look at this ancient link from 1997:
    "Fuji's sales per employee, for example, are twice those of Kodak."
    13 years ago Fuji had twice the sales per employee
    Is Kodak an island full of blubber with folks saying lets figure out how to make money with digital for 19 years?
    More 1997:
    "Kodak lately seems increasingly out of touch with its customers. It has so far sunk $500 million into launching a film and camera system known as Advantix. Manufacturing glitches left retailers short of products, while a confusing ad campaign never explained to consumers why they should buy Advantix."
    In another thread; many folks say it really doesnt matter if the largest retailer (Walmart) dropped Kodak
  18. I just got a digital projector for $25 at Goodwill it was from 2004.
  19. I thought film sales leveled off at least 5 years ago. I don't recall losing any more film camera users since they were already pretty much digital in 05.
  20. Hey It must be us guys with huge freezers in the salt mines. :)
  21. What's film??
  22. @Starvy - I would continue to pay more for film. I am in little NZ so USA are a dream. A roll of 135 slide cost like $20US, Provia 400 could cost up to $30US (a roll). Even if USA prices go up I will still pay for it, but I do mostly thought out preplanned landscapes, cityscapes, so I am a low volume shooter. I am actually looking at ditching 135 for 120 format.
    I don't shoot much other stuff but I kinda just shoot cos everyone else does, haha, but I don't really work on thos images, just snapshots 6x4 prints.
    I enjoy how no PP are done, that is everything is captured off the slide. No scanning, no Photoshop. Just projected.
  23. Dan, I arn't from the states, so it's easier for us to live in one of the few main cities. To me at least, obviously people may prefer a big house than an apartment but there has been increasing amount of people and probably in the States that prefer to live in an apartment just so they can be in the CBD. It's a lifestyle thing.
  24. I don't really know what the figures mean.
    I've bought and used film and chemicals in the last year, but I can't remember when I last bought Kodak, nor even Fuji or Ilford. My recent film has been Adox, Shanghai, and Efke.
    So if I'm not buying Kodak, but I am buying film, are the figures significant ?
    I need to know the figures for the manufacturers who make the film I buy, not just the big famous ones that I don't.
  25. What's film??​
    Its that thin layer of chemical on one side of your plates
  26. Keith:
    I'm really interested in the whole industry and Kodak, being the market leader for most of the World, is a bellwether of the whole industry. In other words, the whole film industry is in decline.
    BUT - it is quite possible for a smaller company to increase sales at the expense of their bigger rivals. In other words, as Kodak and FUJIFILM goes downhill, folks jump to smaller rivals (whether it's price, availability, the look, etc...) and the smaller rival(s) increases sales - they're getting larger pieces of a steadily shrinking pie. Of those smaller companies (Ilford, Foma, Efke, etc...) whose sales are increasing, I don't know.
    As far as color film is concerned, Kodak and FujiFilm are the only brands out there - at least here in the States.
  27. Looking at chart Turnover is down 67% while profit is down 40%, what is doom and gloom about that ... they are more efficient at making money than ever. Also they have lost 2/3rd of the gross revenue over a decade where as I am sure that more than 2/rds of developed markets have moved over to digital from film ..so there is uptake somewhere in film use. This i think is evidenced by the release of new films. It is certainly not what it was for film shooters but I think we need to stop being paranoid and get on with taking pictures:)
  28. Honestly. Don't you have anything better to do than post this chart? If you love digital, shoot it! If you love film, shoot it! Check the U.S. economy and sales of nearly all goods these past 3 years. You'll see a similar graph. If your point is that film is going away soon, then let's all stock up cause it will be worth a Hell of lot more in EBAY! In that case film will far outperform the stock market. Will you post a similar chart then? Doubt it....
  29. Russ;
    Some of like me have used Kodak products for 50 years; and see Kodaks decline more like the Titanic; thus we are concerned.
    Kodak has been on a long death spiral well before the US economy tanked.
    Kodak sold digital cameras in 1991; and still is in a loss in that area; ie 19 years of being funded by film's profits.
    Each new CEO has to deal with the rigid Rochester old guard at Kodak; still stuck in the 1980 glory days. Each new CEO; Whitmore, Fisher (Motorola) , Carp (Kodak), Perez (HP) has had a plan with digital.
    April 2003: "Perez is arriving at Kodak during a tricky transition in the photography industry, as digital imaging makes huge inroads in the traditional silver-halide film market. Kodak is pouring $500 million a year into digital research to keep pace with rivals in a highly competitive arena."
    July 2010 QUOTE :" Today, over 70% of sales come from digital products. The key for Kodak to be successful is to grow the digital product segments to a point where they can become sustainably profitable."
    Kodak has a very basical fundamental problem. After 19 years they are still hopeing that digital will be profitable.
    Another July 2010 QUOTE :"Free cash flow is minimal, coming in negative in 2008 and 2009, and just +$23 million in the past 12 months."
    One can go back and read each Kodak CEO's dogma and it is about using films profits to fund investment in digital;and this goes back even 15 years ago. It is like if one works like a dog and one gives ones spouse gobs of cash to fund some artsy business; "hoping" that some day it will be profitable
    About all of Kodak's profits on film have been pumped into a lossy digital products; and this goes back 10 and 15 years ago.
    Imagine if 70 percent of one sales were negative; or nil in profit like Kodak. ie you work 7 days a week and loose or break even on 5 days jobs; and use the weekends 2 days to "fund" the weekdays job.
    The "trust fund" of Kodak's film sales have funded almost 2 decades worth of digital gizmos; that many have had about no return on investment.
  30. Kodak did introduce their new Ektar film not too long ago and it is a wonderful film. Their T-Max is a big hit. Most of us that shoot color slide film are cross processing it and the Kodak films have the advantage over their Fuji counterparts as the Fuji film gives off some nasty magenta color casts. Fuji also recently announced they were dropping their Neopan 400 and some of the Color Pro series films. Fuji cutting product is good news for Kodak. It's fairly safe to say that most of us here on photo.net all shoot the professional grade films and the quality and features of the film will continue to be our deciding factor when purchasing film. I like to save money as much as the next guy but it the price of the professional grade films goes it I'll gladly pay it and not move the the low end consumer grade films. I do think that Kodak has lost touch with their customer base. I have a terrible time finding C-41 chemicals in small quantities for home use as Kodak keeps phasing out the smaller packaging "due to declining sales". Ironically they did recently introduce a small E-6 chemistry kit(5 liter) for about $60. I have no hard numbers but have to believe that a C-41 kit would be a bigger seller than this new E-6. Everyone I know soups E-6 film in C-41 for the look.
  31. This makes me sad. I guess I'll go back to painting and drawing as my number one hobby... At least pencils and paint brushes will be around a long time.
  32. Honestly. Don't you have anything better to do than post this chart?​
    Actually, no. One of my interests is business and economic history and we're in a unique time where we're seeing an industry be completely changed and I can't think of any other industry that went through something like this - maybe the horse and carriage to automobile would be the closest thing.
    If you love digital, shoot it! If you love film, shoot it!​
    I do both - mostly digital because it's cheaper and even then, I don't have the time because I'm making charts.
    Check the U.S. economy and sales of nearly all goods these past 3 years. You'll see a similar graph.​
    No you won't. The photographic film industry is the only industry that has been declining the way it has.
    If your point is that film is going away soon,​
    No, I never said that. My point was to show how the film industry was changing and maybe get across that some statements I've seen around aren't really true such as: there's a resurgence in film.
    Considering the million and millions of film cameras that are still functional out there and the (sometimes fanatical) following of film users, I think there will still be some demand for film - mostly 35mm - for years to come. But, there won't be enough of a market for companies the size of Eastman Kodak or FUJIFILM to stay in - the photographic film market will be a tiny tiny fraction of what it once was. It has actually amazed me that Kodak has been sticking with it as long as they have since their margins are a tenth of what they were in the 90s.
    then let's all stock up cause it will be worth a Hell of lot more in EBAY!​
    The could very well be true - until it expires and folks can't get it processed.
    In that case film will far outperform the stock market. Will you post a similar chart then? Doubt it....​
    I'll leave that up to you.
  33. Dave B, the housing market has faced a more dramatic decline than film sales have be it existing home sales or new building permits. The other thing you mention is that Kodaks margins are a tenth of what they used to be , but if the charts on the thread starter are anything to go by , their margins are increasing since their profits from film have not been declining with the same rate of change as sales by volume. Reference Expired film, it is now staring to sell on ebay for close to or in some cases more than the cost of a new film.. lomo people want the film bad enough it seems. It is increasingly rare to get a really good deal on film on ebay be it expired or in date, I saw PRovia the other day being sold sucessfully for 90% of its new value even though it was expired a year. I pretty much dont bother looking for deals on old film any more.
  34. John:
    Yeah, the housing market has taken a huge hit and I don't think it's really comparable to what the film industry has gone through: housing is a disaster. Photo film sales took a 68% hit from 2004 to 2009 that (even more if you go back further), unlike housing, is probably never coming back. Film has been going through this long steady and sometimes steep decline.
    That would be an interesting comparison though....
    And I found one and from 2006 to the end of the chart, it still looks like film got housing beat in terms of percent decline - see peak mid '05 to the bottom of '09 - about a 40% drop or so? Compared to 68% for film.
    As far as the margins are concerned - the charts only go back several years. The margins in the late 80s were much higher - I don't have the numbers handy because I've been concentrating on the last several years when digital started to really dig into film's sales.
    That's interesting about old film, but I expect the prices will plummet if C-41 processing doesn't become readily available. Actually, a relative example would be E6 - as E6 processing disappears, I wonder how the old E6 market is doing.....
  35. I received some Portra for my birthday. I still haven't seen the new Portra 400.
  36. My link broke arrrggg!
    Here it is for housing: http://calculatedriskimages.blogspot.com/2010/04/existing-home-sales-march-2010.html
  37. David I was referring more to the Rate of change, its also of note that Kodak are starting to design new film cameras in medium format. I was talking to several film developing places and they tell me that they are seeing a strong pickup in business, one local place has gone from 50 rolls a day to 250. I found a lab locally and was really surprised to see that they had a huge cabinet full of films to give back to customers and they are increasing their number of development runs daily. While its a shrinking market all that matters is that its a viable one and we have some choice left. More and more movie directors are insisting on not shooting in digital so stills photographers will benefit from that too.

    Provia is E6 , the really strange thing about E6 on ebay is that i have encountered many sellers successfully selling it for more than I can get it for from online retailers. I only started studying photography recently and Im sold on film for the moment , im going to start developing it at home. Certainly nothing is like what it was before but Ill keep using film untill I cant and while its true there have been discontinuations in " my time " there have also been 2 introductions of new films also, as somebody has pointed out smaller companies can potentially take up the slack... There are many niche markets within digital photography just as im sure that film can be a niche within photography even if it isnt Kodak making it. Robert I am looking forward to seeing the new Portra also.
  38. I think the music industry actually parallels the photo industry pretty well.
    Film is being displaced by digital but there are a few dedicated enthusiasts and some art student types that are causing a small resurgence of interest in film. The problem is that small resurgence isn't anywhere near enough to stop the massive decline but I think it does provide a floor although we're still a long way from that floor. Kodak and Fuji are big companies. They may eventually decide to get out of the film business but I think smaller companies like Efke and Foma will service what ends up being a tiny but profitable business.
    Many people remember when vinyl records were king and the CD took over in the 80's. CD sales have been dropping for the last 10 years. US music sales have dropped from $14.6 billion in 1999 to just $6.3 billion in 2009.
    But during that time there has been a resurgence in the old vinyl record. Vinyl sales were up 15% from 2006 to 2007. Of course they're only 0.2% of overall album sales but these smaller operations have found ways to make money and grow their business.
  39. We might also want to note the fact that KODAK just invested more money into STILL COLOR FILM for us. I see at this point not a big alarm..this is fairly old news and Kodak is still showing that they are still interested in film. Last October, we got Ektar. Shoot it up.
  40. How is Ilford doing anyway. I like Delta 100 just fine. I could be quite satisfied just shooting that one film for the rest of my life. Is there a doomsday graph for Ilford?
  41. Many dozens of industries have declined like Kodak.
    (1) Some evolve and survive;
    (2) Others party on as the ship sinks investing cash into projects with little rate of return.

    IBM started to get out of the hardware business about 1993; and fully exited a few years ago. Today they are about all services.

    Dietzgen; K&E once made and sold transits; levels; theodolites; drafting items; paper too. A tiny shard of K&E exists with some obscure products. The Dietzgen brand name today is owned by Nashua.Imagine if all Rochester is closed down; and either Illford or Fuji just buys the brand name.

    These old Brand names have a worth even if dead. Thus the old TV names like Philco; Emerson, Zenith can be placed on a Chinese made product; and sold old chap "feels good" because he bought a Philco TV in 1953. One places the Bell and Howell name on a goober P&S digital and some old guy equates the name as adding value.

    The SS Kodak ship hit the digital iceberg over a decade ago; as sales in film sinks; cash is injected into more digital items; in a *hope* that one might have a decent rate of return. The spotted the iceberg 20 years ago.
    All along photo.net one can notice that about nobody uses or talks about any Kodak digital cameras or printers; it is on par with dialog about Instamatics.
    So that digital 70 percent of Kodaks sales today in 2010 are in stuff nobody here uses; and the farm is being bet on it. As film declines further; the cash flow of actual profits from film is used to support 19 years worth of digital attempts. The pickle is daddys trust fund has had 19 years worth of digital projects with little return; and the trust fund is shrinking.

    Aug 2010 Quote:
    "In March, Kodak's movie-film business, which had remained relatively steady even as camera film sales plunged, suffered a new blow when three big movie theater chains secured financing to convert 14,000 movie screens to digital projection by 2013.
  42. I might try out some Efke 25. I think its clear film is not what it was but there are as things stand plenty of options and Im sure there will be more in the future for those who spend their time taking pictures. Just today I shot off two rolls of Ilford 3200 and really wanted to try out a roll of Ektacolor 160, I just bought 500 rolls of the stuff, interestingly a kodak film.
  43. IBM started to get out of the hardware business about 1993; and fully exited a few years ago. Today they are about all services.​
    This would come as quite a surprise to the many people I know designing hardware at IBM.
  44. I wonder if anyone told my cousin he is an IBM repair man. That said Yesterday I shot and developed a roll of Tri-X day before that a roll of Rollei 80s and today a roll of Delta 100.
    Tomorrow is another day and it looks like maybe more Tri-X in that future.
  45. I knew our hobby was in deep trouble when numerous coworkers and friends started bragging about the pathetic quality of the images coming off their cell phones - people who mostly if you handed them a 35mm SLR or DSLR wouldn't know what end to look into.I believe the whole hobby is in dire straights because people have come to accept mediocrity as the norm.Not just in photography but in just about all aspects of modern life.I'll keep shooting my Canon F1 and E6 until they have to pry the damn thing from my cold dead hand.
  46. Douglas
    No we still have many who understand and crawl into caves just to find films. I have shipped film to people all over the world just so they could have it. It is almost like we have an underground economy.
    I like the guy who is making his own film...... He is not here but if he wishes to join us he will.
    Remember Photography was called a bustard and other names by paint artist when it came about... I think it will survive because of those who won't go over to the digital side.
  47. IBM started to get out of the hardware business about 1993; and fully exited a few years ago. Today they are about all services.​
    It seems you have not used any computer hardware other than a PC. IBM got out of the PC business, not the hardware business altogether. They still sell billions of dollars worth of mainframe hardware and Unix/Linux based servers every year. And billions in software too.
  48. I read about a guy who still coats his own glass plates. I find it hard to believe B&W photography was ever a mainstream hobby but it has survived color, E6 and digital. I've never bumped into anyone besides myself that owned enlargers and/or developed their own fim. (and I'm no kid.) Someone will make B&W film 20 years from now. You might pay a lot of money for it but it will be there.
  49. No Don't worry as the world will start to totally end in December 2012. It will be cut short and the survivors will be under the Lord of the Earth Jesus. Then again we will always have Foma and Whatever Rollei re brands. :)
  50. Not to be too cynical, but do you think there is an investment/speculation opportunity here, i.e. to short Kodak shares, hypothetically speaking of course?
  51. Michael Ferron "I've never bumped into anyone besides myself that owned enlargers and/or developed their own fim. (and I'm no kid.)"

    Many of my friends had darkrooms at one time or another, but maybe I am older yet. At one time there were a lot of people shooting B/W, it was cheap and it gave you control over the print that you did not have dropping your film off at a lab. In the early 70s you could walk into any photo supply store and by film in about any size you wanted, including sheet film.
    But times change, all of my friends dumped their darkroom gear long ago and switch to digital in the last 5-10 years.
  52. Competing with color film sales in the motion picture industry are digital video cameras, the digital distributors and the cinemas with digital screens.Already in London nearly half the cinemas have at least one digital screen.Also plans are afoot to roll out boxes which will allow motion pictures for home viewing to be downloaded from internet to television.
    This competing industry is not really suitable for dissecting in a film forum but I get the impression there is not much any color film manufacturer can do about it.
    I'm not sure there is quite the same competition in the B/W film manufacturing business.
  53. Alan ; up the thread I gave a link
    to this QUOTE:
    Aug 2010 Quote:
    "In March, Kodak's movie-film business, which had remained relatively steady even as camera film sales plunged, suffered a new blow when three big movie theater chains secured financing to convert 14,000 movie screens to digital projection by 2013."
    ****These movie film sales of distribution films (called in the trade "prints") have a direct bearing on a film forum.
    ****The profits from these films are a BIG part of Kodak's total film sales.
    ie it is a big part of the shrinking trust fund that throws off usable hard cash;real profits; so Kodak can invest in inkjet printers and digital cameras with a low margin; that they *hope* will someday have a good profit margin. This is the issue; will it pan out with a product line that has a decent profit margins?
    The main issue; is every Kodak financial review going back say 12 to 14 + years has film dropping; and the film profits positive cash flow is being invested in digital; and the next year two it will be profitable. The store gets old.
    It is like if the older stable and declining spouse has a declining income; and all the actual real income are pumped into the younger spouse's artsy pet rock business; with the hope that someday it will be a giant hit with a great profit margin.
    ***Sales of film for movie theater prints has to be included; it funds the digital projects.
    Kodak Profit margin = minus 10.64 percent
    Kodak Price to Book value = minus 5.26
    Kodak return on equity = minus 136.54 percent
    If one removed sales of film used in movies & theaters; these numbers (Above ) would be far worse; since film supports the younger spouse; ie digital; ie the spouse that burns through cash trying to make some sort of product that might someday have a good return.
    One Kodak has several businesses; if you deconvolve them. One supports another.
    It is actually suitable to look at all expense item under a sinking business or family unit. You cannot ignore one component; unless one has the company split up; or spouses divorce.
  54. Beyond establishing that Kodak as a multinational company is in trouble and that film is a niche market in photography which will in all likely hood exist for some years to come in one form or another , just like say pocket wizards or lensbabies or home studio kits .. where is this going?, Kelly what is your point .. what is the message that anybody who shoots film isnt aware of . I finally shot that roll of ektacolor today. This conversation will soon be surplanted by grabbing stills from video at high resolution or the new camera technology that Kodak is developing that doesnt require focus ( square apperture technology ) and canon digital sales will be at the top of this posting in another form. The fact remains that I can buy a mamiya RB67 with top end lenses , shoot 10,000 rolls of film and get better results than if i I had went out and bought a Hasselblad medium format camera, i just have to think and develop myself a little more.... I think everybody knows that at some juncture down the road film will become more difficult but as the sky isnt about to fall tommorrow and the investment required to shoot film is a tiny fraction of that for digital where is the risk in the investment , if one ignores the personal reward.
  55. John; the point is film is declining and look for more products to be axed.
    Film is called a legacy product in many financial reports.
    In my life I have seen Kodachrome in sheets disappear; 8mm and 16mm cine and 35mm still; Super-XX; Royal-X, Verichrome Pan; Film Pack.

    When I was a kid Kodak had film in drug stores in towns of 5000 folks; now today in a vist to New Orleans no photostore even had on single roll of 120 in B&W.
    Somebody who is fat dumb and happy can go on and say there is not a problem and that film is making a comeback.
    When I mailordered B&W film for a trip to New Orleans last June;I had to use two NYC dealers; none had the blend of several iso's I wanted.
    Basic stuff like a roll of 120 B&W has gone from available at a Rexall drug store on a Saturday in a town of 5000 folks; to a town of 1 million has zero rolls for sale today; even at well established pro camera stores. Thus one has to prepare to use film today and use two NYC dealers; because neither has both; one has to remember their holidays; and pay the freight costs. Then if one shoots color say in E6; loca labs have died so one is farming this out.
    Here in printing for the public I got my first 35mm slide scanner back in 1989;and have seen countless numbers of folks go into digital; and either sell or mothball their old 120 and 35mm film stuff. I have never seen an uptick; maybe sometimes just by collectors and users in buying used camera stuff.
    I agree that the investment today to buy decent used MF stuff is low; I often sell customers old stuff on Ebay for them or buy stuff off of Ebay myself.
    A friend of mine graduated from High School and took a art/photo course at a school this summer. They had them using film; developing it too; ie 120 with Yashica TLR and some 35mm slrs too; plus digital and photoshop. The friend already has a Canon dslr; computer; inkjet printer; camera in the iphone too. I doubt they will jump into film; just like I did not jump into 8x10 or glass plates when I was in High School.
  56. One of my traders sent me the below she had received from an analyst. I thought it was interesting. Wouldn't want to touch it with a 10 foot pole though. It's a bit interesting though. Thought I'd share it on this post.
    "Update Coverage Report

    October 4, 2010
    Eastman Kodak Co (NYSE:EK)

    52-week range

    $3.26 - $9.08
    Market Cap

    Shares Outstanding

    Average Volume

    Target Price

    $6.50 - $7.00
    Target Percentage

    65% - 78%
    Eastman Kodak is a worldwide producer of imaging technology to a variety of customers worldwide ranging from individuals to the photographic community to the industrial community.
    We continue to recommend Eastman Kodak for the following reasons:

    • The company’s restructuring and cost reduction programs of the past two years have been completed. While the September 2010 quarter will include a final charge, the earnings outlook will be substantially improved
    • Eastman Kodak has recently renewed its contract with Wal-Mart of Canada to provide photographic services and supplies. Wal-Mart of Canada has 320 locations.
    • The company’s patent infringement suit against Apple Inc. has commenced. This patent suit is similar to the one against LG Electronics and Samsung. Eastman Kodak recently won a settlement valued at over $450 million. We are quite confident the company will prevail.
    • Kodak’s financial position has substantially improved as a result of higher operating cash flow as well as several sizable royalty payments and / or patent settlements. Currently, the company has a cash position of over $1.5 billion which is in excess of its long term debt of $1.2 billion.
    • We consider Eastman Kodak an undervalued and overlooked company at its current prices.
    We are maintaining our initial target price of $6.50 - $7.00 per share. "
  57. I agree with the post above by John Walsh:
    "I think everybody knows that at some juncture down the road film will become more difficult but as the sky isnt about to fall tommorrow and the investment required to shoot film is a tiny fraction of that for digital where is the risk in the investment , if one ignores the personal reward."​
    For me, at this point in time the investment to shoot film is tiny. To replace my 35mm slrs with equivalent digitals would cost thousands. (not to mention if I went dx format and had to buy new wide lenses) I can still get film developed, printed and scanned at Costco for short money and the last time I was at Target I bought three rolls of Kodak 200 film for $6.00. So what is the risk to still shooting film? It surely isn't financial.
    Just because Kodak is having business problems doesn't mean I have to stop shooting film. For me, today, shooting film is still easy, affordable and convenient. I only wish I had time to shoot more!
  58. What about this quote:
    "Color negative film sales have been very stable over the past year. Black-and-white is also doing extremely well. It almost feels that there is a very real resurgence for film. A lot of people that were completely digital are now accepting film again for certain things--or they do like the workflow. And the most exciting thing is to see the younger people adopt film. It's almost a generational thing. They have not shot film growing up, but once they do get a hold of film in a university, they just seem to fall in love with it."
    --Scott DiSabato U.S. Marketing Manager for Professional Film Eastman Kodak Co.
  59. When the American railroads wanted people to ditch passenger service, they simply caused trains to be horribly late, cold, hot, and the whole experience miserable. Not that the traveling public necessarily wanted to stop riding the trains, just that someone up there wanted them to.
    Could digital be something like that?
  60. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator

    When the American railroads wanted people to ditch passenger service, they simply caused trains to be horribly late, cold, hot, and the whole experience miserable.​
    Rail service in the US began a dramatic and rapid decline due to the building of the interstate highway and the increasingly easy access to air travel. The railroads let the service go downhill when there wasn't really a choice for them, usage had dropped too far to sustain the service.
  61. Chris,
    Reference " Scott DiSabatos " quote . I have had digital around since the 350d but only really used it like a point and shoot. I only really came to see photography as an art as soon as my course introduced me to film. I dont think I am alone in that experience , here there is a fledgling but serious movement in film with people working in hybrid workflows. I know one or two people starting to do weddings in film if the light is good and not just 35mm but in 120 format. I dont know how far that revolution will go but I can imagine a floor somewhere for film such that it will have a firm userbase. I see a demographic that is young and many film users who are not " stick in the muds " as in people who dont want to move over. I read an article in a local mag about a large commercial shoot being done on film too cant remember who it was for. Im not naive , nor fat dumb and happy ( well at least not fat anyway lol ) but I worry less now about film dying out completley than I did when I first discovered film. I am a photography student 3 months into my course.
  62. Interesting as I have started using simple digital cameras to explore a little more into their potential for using as art. 99.98% film and of that 98% I self process. but learning a hybrid process with scanners made me want to check a little more.
  63. Scott DiSabatos does not give any numbers so what doing "extremely well" is not at all clear. But the numbers show a market for film that is still in free fall. This will stop at some point but there is still a long ways that it could fall before it does, what will be left at that point is any ones guess.
  64. I read about a guy who still coats his own glass plates.​
    Sally Mann did exactly that some years ago. I don't know if she still does. For the record, those images were not to my taste, but they were nice.
    I like both media and find it interesting that some people keep repeating the 'shoot what you like' slogan. What's PN for if not to discuss our craft in detail? FWIW when I can afford to, I'll be using film more in the future (VISION3 based emulsions sound enticing; I might even load my own V3 if I can be bothered). Good thing most of my SLR lenses are not DX. :)
  65. I check this forum almost every day, sometimes more than once. I get busy at work and skip a couple days and return to find that you've picking picking over the bones of the careers of me and many of my friends. Yes, digital is certainly "disruptive" technology.
    I'm not complaining or blaming anyone. I know that those of us who care about film care about Kodak. So, besides offering a personal perspective, what can I contribute to this discussion?
    On the plus side, the engineers at Kodak have done an incredible job taking cost out of the film manufacturing process. Current sales are roughly 10% of what they were at the peak and film manufacturing is still profitable. They let a few more good people go recently, but there are a few good people left. I expect they will continue to cut costs and help keep film profitable.
    On the minus side, that news about digital projection and other articles about digital origination are literally the beginning of the final phase of the transition of film to digital. For several years, the motion picture business have been keeping the plant going. This will continue as long as motion picture film lasts. The key measure will be how long it takes for digital to get to 50% of the market for both origination and projection. The time from now until then will be roughly the same as the time from then until motion picture film is essentially gone. At that time, still film will be in equally dire straights.
    I don't think film will completely disappear. You can still buy vinyl records. Film will someday occupy a similar niche.
    Some good news--my assessment of the most recent moves at Kodak is that they believe that there is some life left in film. There are still a few film builders left.
  66. Well, unless they call back AMC, Cinemark, and Regal's loan, they are going to be all-digital in three years, which means the "half-way" point is less than three years hence. Print stock used to be 2/3 of motion picture film sales. Motion picture negative was another third. . . Less than 40% of dramatic television is still film. It was over 70% in the U.S. just five years ago.
    Now with the 3D bubble, movies, at least temporarily, will flock towards digital cameras as opposed to shooting with two film cameras or "fake 3Ding" single camera 35. Unless someone can get movies to use dual 2-perf. cameras (still more expensive than single-camera shooting 3-perf., far more expensive than digital), action movies are going to move increasingly digital until 3D dies out
    I highly doubt those three theatre chains are any less than 70% of the market for 35mm prints. I don't know the relation between the volume of print film Kodak and Fuji sell in the United States to the rest of the world, but I'm sure we're a large chunk. And Europe has jumped into digital projection much faster. . .
  67. OK the thing is that tey are not converting all the screens at the theaters... More like 50% will be digital at any multiplex. It is not that all screens will be 100% digital. Movies will be shot on film and converted to digital for some and shot on digital and converted for others.... See where this puts us?
  68. The key thing will be motion picture negative film. Print film has always bee a low margin product. It accounts for the largest share of the coated square meters and the majority of the gross dollars, but print stock is a small contributor to profits. Loosing print film will hurt, but losing motion picture negative will be far worse.
    As I said before, Kodak kept some film builders in the latest round of cuts so they are betting there is some life left in film.
  69. It would be interesting to know what the film engineers are being tasked, is it to produce better film or is it to get the cost down? At this point in time film is a product that has the ability to bring in a lot of money but not for very much longer. Clearly Kodak is going to sell a few more billion dollars of film before the end, given that it would be worthwhile trying to get just as much profit from those billions as you can.
  70. The Rise Of Digital Movie Theaters:
    "By the early 2000s, digital technology was being adopted in many movie theaters. According to the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), figures from Texas Instruments show that the number of digital cinema screens increased steadily between 1999 and 2001, rising from a mere 12 to 45. However, in 2002 this number mushroomed to 124."
    "At the end of 2009 there were more than 16,000 digital cinema screens worldwide, up 86% from the end of 2008, a net gain of more than 7,000 screens. The fastest growing sector of digital screens is 3D. The number of digital 3D screens worldwide more than tripled in 2009, reaching 8,989, or about 6% of screens in the world."
    In 1999; 12 screens; in 2009 16,000 screens (world wide)
    Here is some NATO data on screens; it shows on Dec 6, 2009 there were 39233 total screens in the USA:
    "In March, Kodak's movie-film business, which had remained relatively steady even as camera film sales plunged, suffered a new blow when three big movie theater chains secured financing to convert 14,000 movie screens to digital projection by 2013. The funding is expected to accelerate the digital distribution of movies, giving Kodak less time to adapt to the long-anticipated decline in its film cash cow. "


    ***With the economy being down and construction off; building new digital theaters; or retrofitting old film ones has great low pricing. Land is low in cost; there is a surplus of great construction workers with a low cost of labor; interest rates are low to finance the new expensive digital projectors.
    I went to a RF and SPIE Optical design seminars at a Conference back about say 1989 or or 1990 where the speakers had a digital projector; a prototype unit I believe run off a 386. I think it was a Toshiba unit in Beta usage. A Kodak attendee at break said that "theaters will never go digital"; it sort sounds like 640K of ram is enough. It is kind of creepy to think how that was 20 years ago; and the old guard scoffed at the new fangled gizmos worth
  71. Just to repeat something I said in my earlier post: Target, though not the nation's largest retailor, but a significant market presence none the less, still sells Kodak consumer film. 3 packs of Gold 200 are $5.99 and three packs of ultra max 400 are $7.99. I just picked some up last night (and the shelves were well stocked).
    So, if we want Kodak and the era of inexpensive film to be around for a while longer, we need to get out, buy it, and shoot it!
  72. Life's a bitch then you die.
  73. A comparison with Fuji is worthwhile. Their film division is profitable and they saw a slight increase in sales for the year to June. They are carefully monitoring demand and putting resources into which film stock has consistent demand. They are looking after the film enthusiast and MF/LF photographer out there too, because the cost of say a Leaf 65 to put on your Hassy is horrendous.
    I was told that the experience they gained a short time ago from the aborted cessation of production of Velvia 50, taught them a lot.
  74. A comparison with Fuji is worthwhile. Their film division is profitable and they saw a slight increase in sales for the year to June.​
    What is the source of this information? According to Fuji's annual report for the year ending Mar 2010, sales of color film declined due to market contraction. Which means every other company is selling less film, too. It is their digital camera business that has returned to profitability on an operational basis.
  75. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator

    sales of color film declined due to market contraction.​
    At about 30%/year, somewhat more in the last two years. (Source: Fujifilm.)

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