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More than half a decade before OPs internship began, Kodak had already spun off a chemical company thats fairly successful to this day.

I think a good analogy would be HP. Legendary lab test equipment up till 1980 or something. Spin off the legendary lab test equipment division into a new company thats successful to this day AFAIK although they rename / rebrand every five years. The remainder tries to coast by selling imported Chinese stuff with its famous name rebranding the cheap import, but the writings on the wall as it crashes.

So for both examples, if your core competency is XYZ and you spin off your healthy XYZ division and don't really have a post spinoff plan, the empty dehydrated husk that remains will wither away pretty quickly.

Essentially you've got what banks call the good bank / bad bank strategy where you split and one fails and the productive part remains. For whatever reason companies like HP and Kodak throw the historical branding into the "bad company" side. But the "good company" sides are healthy and in business to this day.

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