NEWS AND NOTES
Gary DiCamillo, who has led the Polaroid Corporation as chairman and chief executive officer through what has been perhaps its rockiest period yet, will resign his post on July 1 to become head of TAC Worldwide, a privately-held staffing company. DiCamillo will continue his position at Polaroid until then, and stay on as a member of Polaroid's board of directors, Polaroid officials said.
In the meantime, Polaroid has no plans to pick a new CEO until a new owner of the company is established, said Skip Colcord, a Polaroid spokesperson.
"There's been no further transition plans made since we made the announcement on May 8th of Gary's departure," Colcord said. "A lot is going to be contingent on who the new owner of Polaroid is and that's in a bankruptcy court supervised process right now."
Colcord added that the "auction" process should be completed by the end of June and a new CEO will be chosen soon after.
In April, Polaroid agreed to sell most of its assets for $264.4 million to an investment group led by One Equity Partners, the private equity arm of Bank One Corp. A hearing on the sale to One Equity Partners—or to a bidder with a higher or better offer—has been set for June 28, 2002.
DiCamillo's resignation announcement came some seven months after the Cambridge, Mass.-based instant photo company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Polaroid is seeking protection from its creditors after compiling nearly $1 billion in debt over the last 15 years.
"I feel a responsibility to see Polaroid through this crucial period of its reorganization and to help prepare the company to emerge from Chapter 11 as an independent company ready for new ownership and new growth opportunities," DiCamillo said. "This is a time of new beginnings both for Polaroid and for me personally as I assume my job of CEO at TAC Worldwide, one of the largest private companies in the United States."
To help recoup some of its losses, Polaroid laid off 2,000 workers in June 2001. Since then, the company has trimmed its workforce to 4,700 and filed a smaller employee bonus plan, which did not include bonus money for DiCamillo. DiCamillo recused himself from the plan, after coming under fire from creditors seeking payment and retirees who lost their health insurance when Polaroid filed for Chapter 11.
Despite its financial troubles, Polaroid launched a new $20 million TV ad campaign in April in an effort to reestablish the Polaroid brand with consumers, particularly young "social snappers."
Kodak Unveils "New and Improved" EasyShare Digital Photo
Daniel Carp unveiled the new Kodak EasyShare system in New York City on May 21, proclaiming, "This really is a great day for digital photography and the EasyShare system."
The new EasyShare system includes advances made with Kodak's EasyShare software and the addition of a "Share" button on the Kodak EasyShare CX4230 digital camera. Carp introduced the 2 megapixel CX4230 as the "next major step in the road of digital photography."
The improvements to the system—which consists of a digital camera and "dock" that features one button uploading directly to the computer—include a new share feature in the CX4230 that allows users to "tag" photos in camera at the time of shooting for printing, sharing and emailing later.