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HP, Kodak to team on Net photofinishing

The computing giant and the imaging company say they are launching a joint company to develop retail photofinishing technology that will allow people to print images over the Internet.

Hewlett-Packard and Eastman Kodak today said they are launching a joint company to develop retail photofinishing technology for traditional film and digital photos.

The new company, which has yet to be named, will combine Palo Alto, Calif.-based Hewlett-Packard's thermal inkjet and digital imaging technology with Rochester, N.Y.-based Kodak's traditional and digital photographic technology to develop compact, digital photofinishing equipment.

Company representatives from Kodak and Hewlett-Packard (HP) were unavailable for comment this morning.

In a statement, the two companies say they will develop a new business category called digital inkjet photofinishing. The new company's technology and Net-based services will allow people to print images over the Internet.

Under the terms of the agreement, the new company will be owned equally by Kodak and HP and is expected to generate between $500 million and $1 billion in sales by 2005, the companies said. The new company is expected to begin shipping products in 2001.

Details on the size of the investments made by the two companies were not immediately available.

In related news, Shutterfly, a digital Internet photo printing service chaired by Netscape Communications founder Jim Clark, today announced plans to partner with Adobe Systems to build photographic printing technologies for digital images.