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Kodak sells sensor IP to California firm

Rochester Business Journal
April 5, 2011

California-based OmniVision Technologies Inc. said it has acquired 850 image sensor-related patents and patent applications from Eastman Kodak Co. for $65 million.

OmniVision (Nasdaq: OVTI) develops digital imaging products. The cash transaction closed March 31, the company said.

The acquired patent portfolio consists of U.S. and foreign patents and patent applications. The intellectual property includes granted patents of CMOS technologies covering early and fundamental CMOS image sensor work and next generation performance improvements, miniaturization and cost reduction technologies, officials said.

“We are pleased with the opportunity to double the size of our intellectual property portfolio for CMOS image sensors and to reinforce our leadership role in the advancement of image sensor technologies and solutions,” CEO Shaw Hong said in a statement. “Market research projections for a number of our target markets suggest that demand for CMOS-based imaging solutions is anticipated to triple or quadruple over the next few years.”

Kodak officials in February told the investment community that it aimed to sell off some assets expected to generate $300 million to $400 million in 2011. Those non-strategic assets on the block included its CMOS sensor business, which Kodak has been trying to sell for more than a year, and real estate related to its shrinking film business.
Chairman and CEO Antonio Perez told analysts at the meeting in New York City that the market for those assets has been soft the past two years and Kodak expects a stronger market in 2011.

OmniVision, based in Santa Clara, said its CMOS imaging technology is used in many consumer and commercial applications, including mobile phones, notebooks and webcams, entertainment devices, security and surveillance systems, digital still and video cameras, automotive and medical imaging systems.

(c) 2011 Rochester Business Journal. To obtain permission to reprint this article, call 585-546-8303 or e-mail

What You're Saying 

James Fisher at 8:13:32 PM on 4/5/2011
That's a nice fire sale. The by-products of the IPs sold may yield 100s of millions, that could have strengthened communities for workers here in upstate NY.

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