New Ownership Group Buys Polaroid



Lead investor Wiaczeslaw Smolokowski also has a majority share of The Impossible Project, which manufactures instant film for legacy Polaroid cameras.

PLR IP Holdings, owner of the Polaroid brand and related IP, has been acquired by a group of investors led by the Smolokowski family.

The new owners have purchased 100 percent of the shares from the Pohlad family, Gordon Brothers, Hilco Global and others.

“I’d like to thank the outgoing board members and shareholders for their outstanding leadership and support over the last several years,” says Scott Hardy, president and chief executive officer, Polaroid. “Under their stewardship, we achieved the tremendous growth and success that has led us to where we are today. We are also very pleased to welcome the new ownership group to the Polaroid family, and excited to begin writing the next chapter in the story of the Polaroid brand.”

Furthermore, the lead investor in the new ownership group, Wiaczeslaw (Slava) Smolokowski, is a Polish businessman and investor with holdings in energy, biotech and real estate sectors. He is the co-founder of Mercuria Energy Group, a commodity trading house, as well as the majority shareholder of The Impossible Project, the company that purchased the last remaining Polaroid factory in 2008 that continues to manufacture instant film for legacy Polaroid cameras.

Additionally, Polaroid’s headquarters and management team will remain in Minnesota. It will also maintain offices in New York City and Hong Kong, with plans for expansion into other international offices.

“We are very pleased that this strategic transaction unites the Polaroid brand with its heritage–a move that’s exciting for both the buyer and the Twin Cities-based Polaroid team,” says Jann Ozzello Wilcox, chief investment officer, Pohlad organization. “It was important to us that the headquarters remain here, and that management and the employees not only retain, but expand their roles with the new owner’s exciting plans for the brand’s future.”