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Suitors bid low for Kodak patents: Report

As Eastman Kodak Co’s patent auction draws to a close, the bankrupt photography company has only received lowball bids for the patents that it believes are worth $2.6 billion, the Wall Street Journal reported citing unnamed sources.

All offers for Kodak’s 1,100 digital patents, for which Apple Inc, Google Inc and Microsoft Corp are reportedly bidding, have come in significantly below the $500 million mark, the Journal said.

Bankrupt Kodak is selling the patents in order to repay creditors. The company filed for Chapter 11 protection in January after failing to keep up as consumers and rivals shifted to digital photography from film photography.

“Our patent auction is a complex and dynamic process, and is very much ongoing,” Kodak spokeswoman Stefanie Goodsell told Reuters.

“We and all participants are still bound by the court order on confidentiality and cannot comment prior to an outcome.”

The auction process is expected to continue through the weekend and Kodak lawyers are due to present the bids to the bankruptcy court on Monday at 5 p.m. EDT (2100 GMT), according to bid procedures.

The photographic film pioneer, which had tried to restructure to become a seller of consumer products such as cameras, had obtained a $950 million bankruptcy loan from Citigroup and is expected to pay that off from the proceeds.

Copyright Thomson Reuters 2012

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