Photography firm Kodak (NYSE:KODK) has jumped on the cryptocurrency bandwagon, announcing the launch of its new ‘KodakCoin’ on Wednesday.
The currency will be “a photocentric cryptocurrency to empower photographers and agencies to take greater control in image rights management,” causing Kodak shares to almost double in price.
The move represents a move in a new direction for Kodak, who recovered from a bankruptcy in 2013 by selling off most of its patents to large American companies including Apple and Microsoft. It is now hoping to take a slice of the growing blockchain technology and cryptocurrency movement which, despite warnings from various senior figures in the finance industry, continues to gain traction.
KodakCoin will aim to help photographers find unlicensed use of their photographs online. Associated KodakOne software will trawl the web to find photographs used without permission, with the photographer then being paid in KodakCoin.
Kodak chief executive Jeff Clarke said:
“Kodak has always sought to democratise photography and make licensing fair to artists. These technologies give the photography community an innovative and easy way to do just that.”
Kodak shares rose over 110 percent on the news, and are currently trading up 117.6 percent at 6.80USD (1139GMT).