Britain’s pensions lifeboat is to hoist a ‘for sale’ sign above Kodak Alaris, the photographic equipment group it took control of as part of a rescue of its retirement schemes.
Sky News has learnt that the Pension Protection Fund (PPF) has kicked off talks with bankers about an auction of the company behind the ‘Kodak moments’ made famous by its multinational advertising campaigns.
The PPF, which is funded through a levy on companies with defined benefit schemes, has owned Kodak Alaris since 2020, and has had an involvement in payments to its retirees since 2013.
The business now comprises the Kodak photo kiosks and film division and Alaris, which makes document scanners and software.
It is chaired by Christopher Howell, a turnaround veteran who represents the PPF’s interests.
Oliver Morley, the PPF chief executive, also sits on the Kodak Alaris board.
The valuation of the company that the PPF is expected to seek from an auction was unclear on Friday.
In its accounts for the year to March 31, 2022, it reported a 29% increase in revenues to €130m, although the scale of the increase was partly the result of its recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.
The pensions lifeboat has become a critical part of Britain’s pensions landscape, and has played important roles in corporate restructurings at companies including Sir Philip Green’s Arcadia Group and Tata Steel UK.
A PPF spokeswoman declined to comment on the prospective sale.