PLR IP Holdings, LLC, the company that owns the Polaroid brand, is under new ownership. Wiaczeslaw (Slava) Smolokowski is a Polish investor and businessman who owns a majority share in the Impossible Project, the company that continues to produce Polaroid’s legacy instant film. A press release issued today mentions that Polaroid headquarters will remain in Minnesota and maintain its Hong Kong and New York City offices, with ‘plans for expansion into other international offices.’
Polaroid first filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 2001. It was acquired in 2005 by Petters Group Worldwide, but more trouble followed and the brand filed for Chapter 11 again in 2008. It was acquired as a joint venture by Hilco Global and Gordon Brothers in 2009. Since then, the company has overseen licensing of its name on a range of digital cameras and accessories, from colorful action cams to an ill-advised Nikon 1 imitator.
Polaroid Acquired by New Ownership Group
Minneapolis, MN—May 12, 2017— PLR IP Holdings, LLC, the owner of the Polaroid brand and related intellectual property, has been acquired by a group of investors led by the Smolokowski family. The new owners acquired 100% of the shares, effective May 5, 2017, from the Pohlad family, Gordon Brothers, Hilco Global and others.
The lead investor in the new ownership group, Wiaczeslaw (Slava) Smolokowski, is a Polish businessman and investor with holdings in the energy, biotech and real estate sectors. He is the cofounder of Mercuria Energy Group Limited, one of the world’s largest commodity trading houses.
Mr. Smolokowski is also the majority shareholder of The Impossible Project, the company that purchased the last remaining Polaroid factory in 2008 and continues to manufacture instant film for legacy Polaroid cameras.