Kodak shares surge 120pc on cryptocurrency launch

63

Shares in Kodak more than doubled on Tuesday after the one-time leader in photography became the latest company to jump on the cryptocurrency bandwagon.

The storied Rochester, New York-based company said in a statement it is launching a cryptocurrency called “KODAKCoin” for photographers, part of “KODAKOne,” an image rights management platform in a licensing partnership with WENN Digital.

The platform uses blockchain technology, the backbone of bitcoin and other digital currencies that have surged in recent months and raised fears of a price bubble.

The stock was up 121pc at $6.80 on the New York Stock Exchange.

The film pioneer founded over a century ago has struggled to transform itself into an imaging software and technology company. Kodak was a Dow Jones Industrials component until April 2004, and its stock has slumped 90pc since it emerged from bankruptcy in 2013.

Several other companies in recent weeks have been rewarded with sharp rises in share price after announcing their transformation into cryptocurrency businesses.

“This is getting ridiculous,” said Dennis Dick, a proprietary trader at Bright Trading LLC in Las Vegas. “From a fundamental point of view, none of this makes sense.”

Riot Blockchain shares have tripled since October when the former biotechnology firm changed its name and said it was revising its business focus to bitcoins.