Leaf Imaging enter new phase

Phase One, makers of medium-format digital backs, announced today the intention to purchase specific assets of rival back maker, Leaf , while forming a new company: Leaf Imaging Ltd.

Leaf Systems Inc of Massachusetts USA, was formed in 1984, but was subsequently acquired by Scitex in 1997 while operations moved to Tel Aviv. Shortly after, in 2000, Leaf changed ownership again when Creo Inc acquired Scitex. However that wasn't to last when Eastman Kodak acquired Creo Inc during 2005.

In the same week that Kodak announced the end of Kodachrome, the latest announcement sees the imaging giant shedding certain assets of Leaf, while entering into a intellectual property license with Phase One.

However as Kodak are the main, if not sole, manufacturer of image sensors for Phase One as well as Leaf, this acquisition was not entirely unexpected. As the number of rival digital camera back makers contract, Phase One are emerging as the dominant player in the medium format market.

Press release:

Leaf Imaging -- a new Phase One company

COPENHAGEN and TEL AVIV, June 25, 2009 -- Phase One A/S, in
conjunction with senior management employees of Leaf, today announced that they have created a new entity, Leaf Imaging Ltd., to purchase certain assets of the Leaf camera business. The assets include the “Leaf” brand product names, engineering design and production tools. The new entity will also enter into an intellectual property license with Eastman Kodak Company
that is royalty-bearing to Kodak. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

In collaboration with Phase One, high end Leaf digital camera equipment will continue to be developed in Israel and marketed under the “Leaf” brand through a global network of specialized and dedicated value added resellers.

Leaf high quality digital camera backs with up to 56 Mega pixels and superior resolution and image quality can interface to all leading medium and large format cameras.

“We are committed to exciting future developments for the Leaf brand of products through innovative engineering, worldwide marketing and customer service, said Henrik O. Håkonsson President and CEO, Phase One. “Leaf customers will benefit from the many synergies with Phase One.”

“Since introducing the world’s first digital camera back in 1992, Leaf has been recognized as a worldwide leader in the professional photography market. Our extensive digital imaging and color management knowledge, combined with Phase One’s software and hardware capabilities creates a unique opportunity for the world’s leading photographers,” said Dov Kalinski, General Manager, Leaf.


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