Eastman Kodak


Headquartered in Rochester, New York, with its legal establishment in New Jersey, the Eastman Kodak Company, universally recognized simply as Kodak, stands as a premier U.S.-based multinational firm that specializes in imaging, photography equipment, as well as related materials and services. The organization came into existence in the year 1888, thanks to the pioneering efforts of its founder, George Eastman. Kodak earned its name and reputation chiefly through its photographic film offerings, a domain where it enjoyed unassailable leadership for much of the 20th century. Notably, in the year 1976, Kodak monopolized a staggering 90% of the photographic film market within the United States.

History and Founding


The story of Kodak dates back to 1888 when George Eastman founded the company. Eastman was not just an entrepreneur but also an inventor who aimed to make photography more accessible to the general public. Before Kodak, photography was a complicated and expensive endeavor that typically required the skills of a professional. Eastman’s innovations led to the creation of roll film and portable cameras, revolutionizing the field of photography.

Dominance in the 20th Century

During the majority of the 1900s, Kodak was synonymous with photographic film. In fact, the company’s influence was so significant that it managed to hold a dominating position in the market. This was highlighted in 1976 when the company’s market share of photographic film sales in the U.S. touched an impressive 90%. The business’s success was a testament to its innovation and quality products, which became a benchmark in the industry.

Products and Innovations

Kodak didn’t just stop at photographic film. Over the years, the company has diversified its product line to include various other offerings related to imaging and photography. This includes digital cameras, inkjet printers, and even medical imaging solutions. They also offer services that complement their hardware, such as photo printing and archiving solutions.

Photographic Film

Kodak’s first and most significant product was photographic film. The company was instrumental in the invention and commercialization of roll film, which dramatically altered the landscape of photography, making it more accessible and user-friendly.

Digital Transformation

As technology evolved, Kodak also delved into the digital sphere, though not without challenges. Digital cameras and imaging software became part of their product line-up, reflecting the changing demands of the consumer market.

Other Ventures

Beyond photographic equipment and materials, Kodak expanded its scope to include services like commercial printing, packaging, and software solutions aimed at different sectors including healthcare and printing industries.

Market Presence and Economic Impact

During its zenith, Kodak was not just a market leader but also a significant employer and economic contributor. Its influence stretched beyond the U.S. to have a global reach, with products available in multiple countries and a workforce that spanned continents. However, it should be noted that the transition to digital led to certain challenges for Kodak, including bankruptcy in the 21st century, from which it has since emerged.


In summary, the Eastman Kodak Company, often simply called Kodak, is a U.S. multinational corporation specializing in the imaging and photography industry. Founded in 1888 by George Eastman in Rochester, New York, the company established itself as the dominant player in the photographic film market for most of the 20th century. Its wide array of products and services have evolved over time to include digital solutions and services in commercial printing and healthcare sectors, among others.

It is fair to say that Kodak has been a cornerstone in shaping the photographic and imaging industry, contributing significantly both to technological advancements and economic activities. With a history spanning over a century, Kodak stands as a testament to innovation and quality in the realm of imaging and photography.

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