Kodak Pulls the Plug on Printing Oct 02, 2012 10:48 by Huw Carrington
As a business, Kodak have been going for a long time now, but they only really got into the printer game, after a few early forays in home photo printing, about three years ago when they came out with the ESP range. These machines were produced with cheaper total ink costs in mind, and thousands of home users switched to them at this promise. We’ve looked at how much the ink really costs before , but that’s not what we’re writing about today.
Back in January, we told you about Kodak bringing in a team of specialists to help them file for bankruptcy – a dwindling market share, and slimmer profits, have led to this period of difficulty for them. At the time there were some expectations that they might stay afloat by their relatively new inkjet printer production.
This, it would seem, was unfounded. At the weekend it was revealed that they intend on abandoning this branch of the firm, moving out of the desktop printer market, sometime in 2013 in a further downsizing. For those of you with one of their printers, don’t worry though – due to the substantially higher profit margins involved in the ink compared to the hardware itself, they have no intention of stopping selling the consumables just yet.
Only a little more than a month ago we wrote a similar story about Lexmark planning to exit the market in much the same way. It’s a little bit ironic that at the time they gave Kodak’s growing share of the market in Europe as one of the causes behind their move, only for their competitor to leave in much the same way now.
So, with two household names pulling out, where does that leave things? Maybe they’re the first of many, and the next big brand will be hot on their heels, or perhaps, with a little more wriggle room and less competition, the remaining companies, HP, Canon, Epson, will stretch out and fill the vacuum left behind.
What do you think? Worried about that will leave things? Or just happy to see them go? Leave us a comment, and share your thoughts with the rest of the community.