May 27, 2024

Kodak Loss Exceeds Forecast As Silver Prices Hurt Earnings

The photography company said Thursday that film business revenue declined by 14 percent, to $367 million. Kodak said part of the decrease was a result of a rise in raw material costs, particularly in silver, which is used to manufacture film.

Kodak’s executives declined to say how much the rise in silver prices hurt earnings during the first quarter. In February, the company said that in 2010, every $1 change in the price of silver per troy ounce affected earnings by $10 million to $15 million.

Spot silver on Thursday touched a high of $49.56 an ounce. It has gained nearly 60 percent so far this year.

Last year, Kodak received a $550 million one-time payment as part of a licensing agreement. Many investors see Kodak’s value in its lucrative portfolio of intellectual property. It has more than 1,000 patents, and in 2010, it made an estimated $630 million from its licenses, according to Argus Research.

But analysts have said the revenue from licenses is unpredictable, and the portfolio may eventually dwindle.

Kodak expects to generate $250 million to $350 million in revenue each year through 2013 from its licensing agreements. This excludes payments from a potential settlement from a pending patent case over electronic camera technology with Apple and Research in Motion.

Kodak said Thursday that its adjusted first-quarter loss from continuing operations was $249 million, or 92 cents a share, compared with a year-earlier profit of $119 million, or 40 cents per share. The loss of 92 cents a share was more than the loss of 61 cents a share predicted by analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters.

Revenue fell 31 percent, to $1.32 billion, which falls short of the $1.37 billion analysts were expecting.

Shares of Kodak closed down 32 cents, or 10 percent, to $2.85 on the New York Stock Exchange on Thursday.

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