It’s a sad day for film photographers: Kodak has announced that it will sell off its camera film business, one of the huge pillars of what made Kodak Kodak in the eyes of consumers around the world. It’s yet another step in the company’s effort to climb out of bankruptcy, which it hopes to do by next year, and transform itself into a commercial printing company.
Businessmen around the world are watching Facebook’s plummeting stock closely, but perhaps none more so than the folks over at Instagram. The world was shocked back in April when Facebook agreed to purchase the tiny startup for $1 billion, but one key fact is that the price was to be paid in a mixture of cash and stock. Due to the decline of FB stock, hundreds of millions of dollars have been wiped from the purchase price, which is currently valued at somewhere between $700 and $800 million.
Before Instagram, there was Hipstamatic. Hipstamatic was one of the pioneers and heavyweights in the retro filter photo app space, but when Instagram came along, the price advantage (free vs. $2), ease of use, filter selection, and built-in social network allowed Instagram to turn into the new 800 lb. gorilla of mobile photo sharing.
The story is strangely similar to the history of Myspace and Facebook, and yesterday the narrative became even more identical. On the same day that Instagram rolled out version 3.0 to its 80+ million members, Hipstamatic laid off all but 5 of its core staff.
Remember that new Flickr account we reported on yesterday that appeared to be owned by Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer? Turns out it actually wasn’t her, and was quickly taken down after becoming a big story in the blogosphere.
TechCrunch reports that Mayer actually does have a Flickr account — one that’s set to private.
My mind is a strange and dangerous place. I shouldn’t go in there alone after dark. But the other night I was thinking, just me and myself, about all the new camera releases this year. Which had made the biggest impact? Was it the Canon 5D III with that world-class autofocus system? The Olympus OM-D bringing mirrorless cameras up a notch in image quality and usability? Should I mention the excellent Samsung NX20, just because no one knows it’s really good? Give the Fuji X-Pro an award for best concept most poorly carried out? Consider the Sony NEX-7 for putting full-frame resolution on an APS-C sensor?
The business world let out a collective gasp when it was announced back in April that Facebook had agreed to acquire Instagram for a whopping $1 billion. Eric Savitz of Forbes points out that photo publishing company Shutterfly — which has the same market valuation as Instagram — may actually be a smarter buy:
Shutterfly this year is expected to post $582 million in revenue, up a gaudy 137% since 2009. As of the end of March Shutterfly had zero debt and $144 million in cash with another $100 million due to flow in this year. At a market cap of nearly $1 billion, Shutterfly is being told by the stock market that it is worth the same as Instagram, which being acquired by Facebook for $1 bil- lion in cash and stock. While Insta- gram has far more users (30 million), it lacks a few business essentials such as revenue, profit and scale. Instagram has about a dozen employees. Shutterfly, with 1,000 employees, produces photo books, prints and other goods in factories in Phoenix and Charlotte.
An interesting fact from the article: by 2015, Americans will take an average of 322 photos per person per year, or roughly a photo a day.
Leave Instagram To Facebook: Shutterfly Is The Better Buy [Forbes]
Image credit: shutterfly by kate at yr own risk
Those of you who were hoping that all of the Facebook/Instagram acquisition talk would end may not get a respite as soon as we thought. Although the original acquisition papers from Facebook stated that they would try to close the deal in Q2, a rumored Federal Trade Commission (FTC) competition probe may delay that closure by up to a year.
As of right now there’s no evidence that the probe poses any viable threat to the acquisition itself — apparently they’re quite common for deals over $66 million — but the inevitable red tape would add some serious delay to the whole matter.
Unfortunately, it looks like we may have to wait on that Instagram Snap camera.
Image credit: FTC by vpickering
After narrowly missing the opportunity to acquire Instagram, it seems that Twitter was eager to try again; this time with one of the most popular paid camera apps, Camera+. Apparently, Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey actually met with tap tap tap — the makers of Camera+ — to discuss an acquisition shortly after news of Facebook’s Instagram acquisition broke.
This news comes just two weeks after Twitter CEO Dick Costolo told the press that they would not be trying to acquire an Instagram competitor. It’s all the same, however, because negotiations didn’t end up leading to a purchase or even an offer. The main reason for the breakdown in negotiations was apparently location: Camera+ employees are located all over the world and were reluctant to relocate to San Francisco.
(via Bloomberg and MacWorld)
They say that when it rains it pours, and nowhere is that more evident than with the troubled, once-great photography company Kodak. After filing for bankruptcy, narrowing its focus to printers, and selling the Kodak Gallery for pennys on the dollar, we sort of hoped the company would start to see some rays of sunshine break through their perpetual cloud cover. Unfortunately, their quarter’s earnings report is anything but sunny.
Early last month we reported that Shutterfly had agreed to buy Kodak Gallery for a meager $23.8 million. The process, done by way of a “stalking horse bid,” meant that another company was allowed to make a competing bid for the gallery by April 20th.