Kodak CFO Brust to Outline Expanded Digital Strategy
Friday, November 21, 2003
Nov. 21, 2003--Eastman Kodak Company will leverage the cash-generating strengths of its traditional imaging operations to position itself as a leading provider of digital products and services to consumers and commercial customers, according to Robert H. Brust, Kodak's Chief Financial Officer. Speaking yesterday at the Western New York Investors Conference, Brust outlined key elements of Kodak's new strategy, which include: Disciplined management of traditional businesses to maximize cash; Accelerated growth in the company's existing portfolio of digital imaging products and services; Tightly focused acquisitions to fill gaps in existing businesses and accelerate entry into closely related imaging markets; And longer-term organic growth opportunities in areas such as electronic displays and inkjet printing. Kodak plans to use the cash generated from its traditional business to build a larger digital business - whose sales already total about $4 billion - through investments and acquisitions totaling as much as $3 billion through 2006. This strategy involves the commercialization of Kodak technologies as well as highly disciplined, complementary acquisitions focused in medical imaging and commercial printing, as well as other imaging-related technology and intellectual property, Brust said. As part of this effort, Kodak already has announced acquisitions totaling more than $600 million that extend its capabilities in medical imaging, entertainment imaging and consumer digital imaging. "As we indicated on Sept. 25, when we unveiled our expanded strategy, these actions are essential to restore profitable growth," Brust said. "Digital imaging has become a mass market, driven by consumer demand, while digital technologies have given commercial customers new ways to increase productivity and revenue. The timing of these investments makes perfect sense. Brust reiterated the company's projection made on Sept. 25 that sales would increase 5% to 6% annually from 2002 through 2006. He also stressed that investments and acquisitions will be tied to Kodak's core strengths, which include imaging and materials science, brand reputation and presence in global markets. "Kodak's profitable foundation in traditional imaging, combined with a solid financial position and a new leadership team experienced in digital markets, positions the company to deliver on those plans," he said.