Eastman Kodak Company announced today that it will sell all the assets associated with its OLED business to a group of LG companies. The company has also has into a technology cross-license agreement with LG Electronics, Inc., which will allow each company broad access to the other?s patent portfolio.
Kodak's move to sell its OLED business is expected to tighten Kodak?s investment focus and strengthen its financial position. Financial details were not disclosed.
Kodak has been a pioneer in developing technology associated with OLED displays. In the 1970s, Kodak scientists developed the world's first viable OLED material.
Kodak will have continuing access to its OLED technology for use in its products. Subject to customary closing conditions, the transaction is expected to close by the end of the year.
"As we said earlier this year, OLED is one of the businesses we wanted to reposition to maximize Kodak?s competitive advantage at the intersection of materials and imaging science," said Laura G. Quatela, Kodak?s Chief Intellectual Property Officer and manager of the company?s OLED business. "This action is consistent with that strategy. Our OLED intellectual property portfolio is fundamental; however, realizing the full value of this business would have required significant investment."
Kodak has also entered into a technology cross-license agreement with LG Electronics, Inc., which will allow each company broad access to the other?s patent portfolio.
The license agreement is royalty-bearing to Kodak. Additional financial details were not disclosed.
The agreement could pave the way for LG to advance in the development of OLED displays, competing against Sony and Samsung.
"We are pleased to have reached a mutually beneficial arrangement that advances the interests of Kodak and LG and validates the strength of Kodak?s intellectual property portfolio," said Laura G. Quatela.
The companies also agreed to conclude their patent litigation, which involved a subset of their imaging technologies. Pursuant to a settlement agreement, Kodak and LG will request that the U.S. International Trade Commission terminate the investigations initiated earlier this year following complaints filed by both companies in late 2008.