OCTOBER 23--Eastman Kodak Company (Rochester, NY; www.kodak.com/go/oled) has announced that Sumitomo Corporation has been appointed distributor for Kodak OLED (organic light-emitting diode) materials in Japan. As part of the agreement, Kodak's display-products business unit will partner with Sumitomo to supply OLED materials to licensee customers, as well as other research-and-development efforts throughout Japan.

Displays based on OLEDs offer bright, full-motion images that are viewable from a very wide angle. The displays comprise specially designed organic thin-film materials that emit light when stimulated by an electric charge. Benefits over conventional technologies include higher contrast for superb readability in most lighting conditions, faster response time to support streaming video, and industry-leading (165°) viewing angle and thinner design for better ergonomics. OLED technology is also known in Japan as OEL, or organic electroluminescence.

Through the partnership, Sumitomo will allow local distributors and customers within Japan to place orders with Sumitomo customer-service representatives for standard delivery in just a few business days. The partnership was effective September 18, 2002, and Sumitomo will be distributing Kodak's OLED materials, which includes Alq (electron transport material) and NPB (hole transport material).

All materials will continue to be supplied, warranted, and supported by Kodak. In addition, Kodak technical and marketing representatives will team closely with Sumitomo representatives to ensure a high level of customer service. As part of this commitment, Kodak also plans to launch new materials on a frequent basis to enhance display product performance in order to address a broader set of applications.

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