Polaroid Corp to end film-making operations

15 February, 2008:

The company, which became famous for its instant cameras and photos, has decided to exit making film for its instant-picture cameras. This might happen by the end of 2008. Polaroid, which used to employ as many as 15,000 people in Massachusetts, deciding to close down has come as a surprise.

The company will be closing down its Norwood and Waltham film-manufacturing facilities. And later in 2008, it would end all film-making operations in Mexico and the Netherlands. Polaroid's Norwood plant will be shut down, and the Waltham facility would follow suit.

In year 2001-02, Polaroid was on the verge of bankruptcy and sold most of its assets and trademark name to the private-equity arm of Bank One, now part of JPMorgan Chase & Co, in 2002. Bank One later on, in 2005, sold off Polaroid for $426 million to Petters Group Worldwide.

Polaroid Corp's instant camera had debuted way back in 1948 by its founder Edwin Land. The innovation transformed the world of photography . More innovations followed and in year 1963, the company introduced cartridge film with its 100-series camera. The Polaroid instant camera in fact saw a boom during the 1970s, with the introduction of SX-70. However, with the advent of digital cameras, Polaroid was badly hit.

The decision to close down will affect around 150 employees. An additional 300 people will lose their jobs in Mexico and the Netherlands.

However, many at Polaroid feel that there is light at the end of the tunnel. The company's mobile printers are still sought after.





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