The bankrupt Eastman Kodak Company said Thursday it plans to sell its consumer film business, the cornerstone on which the company was founded.

“We are reshaping Kodak,” company chief executive Antonio M Perez, said in a news release that also outlined Kodak's next steps to get out of bankruptcy. The company that pioneered photography now aims to focus primarily on commercial, packaging and functional printing solutions and enterprise services.

Kodak hopes to find a buyer not only for the consumer film unit, but also for its photo kiosks and commercial scanner businesses by the middle of next year, the release said. The company believes selling the assets along with other cost-reducing measures will be significant milestones toward emerging from bankruptcy in 2013.

Film and photo paper were once a goldmine for Kodak and rivals such as Agfa. The switch to digital photography, however, devastated these income sources. In the first half of the year, Kodak's revenue shrank more than one-quarter to 2 billion dollars and the company's loss rose to 665 million.

The commercial, packaging and functional printing and enterprise services have substantial long-term growth prospects worldwide and are core to the future of Kodak, the company said.

“We have to make some tough choices to build our future and this is one of those choices,” Perez said in a conference call, according to Bloomberg. “Kodak's goal is not simply to emerge but obviously to emerge as a profitable, sustainable company and today's actions are moving us decisively along that path.” - Sapa-dpa