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KodakOne is a crypto project aimed at rolling out a particular cryptocurrency called KodakCoin. The idea behind the project is that photographers would be able to use the digital coin for payment or licensing of photographs. KodakOne is now experiencing some controversy after it was reported that they owe thousands of dollars in unpaid invoices for contractors working on developing the platform. The figure for outstanding invoices currently sits at $125,000. The contractors have stated they will go to court if the invoices are not paid in seven days.
One contractor, who is owed $36,000 said: “[KodakOne] are using the blockchain hype to scam investors and employees of hundreds of thousands of euros.” Kodak dispute these claims and said the claims are damaging their company.
In terms of progress on the project, it seems that although Kodak is actively promoting the project, development has slowed down and Kodak has already missed key milestones they promised to deliver at certain times. It’s not uncommon for projects to fall behind and miss targets. Often companies find that their initial estimations of time and cost are not realistic once the project is underway, and this leads to stagnation or funding issues. However, Kodak doesn’t seem to be being transparent about issues in the project.
It is clear something is going wrong if these claims are true. If contractors are not being paid and milestones are not being hit, then investors are right to be worried. The backlash against Kodak would likely not be so severe if they were transparent about issues and updated timeframes to reflect their current projections, rather than burying their head in the sand and continuing to make promises.
When it comes to an inherently risky endeavor like a crypto-coin issued in an initial coin offering (ICO), investors are taking enough risk without trying to read between the lines of Kodak’s Twitter feed to find out where the project is up to. It is likely that Kodak will pay the invoices to avoid legal escalation, even if just to protect their name at a time eyebrows are raising over the viability of this crypto project (and other controversies associated with the company).
Initially, photographers were excited about the KodakOne project, it’s a innovative way to transform how payments are currently handled in the industry, but some people are now becoming disheartened. Hopefully, Kodak will reevaluate the project and update their timescales to reflect realistic deployment dates. If they do this, increasing their transparency with the market, people’s excitement may start to climb once again.