Novell to acquire SuSE Linux
Novell announced a $210 million plan to acquire SuSE Linux, a distributor of
the open-source operating system. The move has been applauded by the industry
in general. Even Microsoft has responded positively, and IBM plans a $50 million
investment in Novell.
Once the acquisition is completed (probably in January 2004), it could impact
certain companies. For one, SuSE, the number two Linux distributor, will have
a stronger position. That will directly impact Red Hat. Outside the Linux camp,
other operating system makers may also have one more reason to worry.
More importantly, this acquisition will give Novell a new opportunity; it has
so far been servicing a base of NetWare users.
Novell CEO Jack Messman said, "Linux no longer needs to stay at the periphery.
It can come into the core of the business. It can come into the data center."
Novell's existing product line-up includes a desktop and a server version of
Linux, as well as a number of utilities for managing and configuring Linux-based
machines (from its Ximian purchase and developed in-house for its ZENworks product
line). The combination of Linux, add-on management products and Novell's support
and training services should offer corporate customers a viable alternative
to products that are based on Microsoft's Windows operating system, according