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Kodak Outlines Digital Printing and Publishing Strategy at drupa

Press release from the issuing company

DUSSELDORF, Germany--May 7, 2004-- Eastman Kodak Company today outlined its strategy for increasing the sales of its Graphic Communications Group during a presentation at the drupa 2004 trade show. Formerly called Commercial Printing, the Graphic Communications Group consists of three wholly owned subsidiaries: Encad, Inc., a maker of large-format inkjet printers; NexPress Solutions, a leader in digital color and black and white printing solutions; and Kodak Versamark, the world leader in continuous inkjet technology. In addition, the Graphic Communications Group manages Kodak's interest in Kodak Polychrome Graphics (KPG), a 50-50 joint venture with Sun Chemical. Currently, the group boasts revenues of $2 billion, including approximately $1.5 billion in unconsolidated revenue from KPG. "Graphic Communications reflects how our customers view their businesses," said James Langley, president, Graphic Communications, and senior vice president, Eastman Kodak Company. "The business is changing--driven largely by the requirement to repurpose content to both print and electronic forms of communications--and is much larger than the term printing implies. Based on where the market is headed, Graphic Communications is the best description of our business." Highlights from drupa included: NexPress Solutions Inc. announced an expanded relationship with Canon on joint development of digital color printing solutions; The NexPress Intelligloss solution, which enables print providers to add a high-gloss finish to printed pieces for higher marketing impact; Encad's NovaJet 1000i large-format inkjet printer, which utilizes an advanced print drying system, unique print mask technology and innovative dye and pigmented ink design to deliver maximum productivity and exceptional image quality; NexPress Digital's Digimaster E150 print system, a modular 150-image-per-minute digital black-and-white press offering enhanced image quality, greater range of substrate weights and thicknesses on the most reliable paper path on the market; KODAK VERSAMARK VX5000e Printing System featuring the high-resolution KODAK VERSAMARK DH92 printhead and driven by the KODAK VERSAMARK CS600 system controller. With acquisition of the NexPress and Heidelberg Digital operations, Kodak has a product portfolio that serves customer needs from pre-press to robust digital color and black-and-white printing, large-format printing and the ability to do transactional communications. These offerings are designed to meet customer requirements for in-plant and commercial printers, emerging digital service providers and data centers and data service bureaus. "We are building a business architecture that helps our customers make a better impression," said Langley. "It starts with understanding customer requirements in focused market segments. With the combination of Encad, NexPress, Versamark and KPG, Kodak is delivering a product portfolio that includes everything from short-run digital color to one-to-one customized transactional communications. "We will work with both direct and indirect distribution channels to ensure that we have a competitive distribution capability and will provide our customers with 'one face'." Langley also took the opportunity to discuss how Kodak's technology will provide a growth platform for its customers in the market. "Equally important to our current suite of products is the technology that we have at Kodak," Langley noted. "We have a range of technology--from electrophotography to continuous inkjet and digital black and white--that will fuel our growth in this market and help our customers meet their needs." Since September 2003, when Kodak announced its new digitally oriented strategy, the company has moved quickly and boldly to expand its portfolio of digital commercial businesses. As part of that effort, the Graphic Communications Group has increased participation in the leading edge segments of the market--including digital color and black and white printing solutions, large-format ink jet and high-speed variable data printing. "Our focus right now is on execution," said Langley. "We have the right strategy, management team, products and technology in place. And our new go-to-market model will enable us to serve our customers and succeed in the market."