Originally Published: Wednesday, 22 December 1999 Author: Ronny Ko
Published to: columnists/Ronny Ko Page: 1/1 - [Printable]

The Story of Two Penguins

While Microsoft begs the Department of Justice not to break up the company, Linux continues to builds momentum. Today it is hard to a find a software company that isn't porting its products to Linux or forming a strategy to take advantage of Linux's burgeoning popularity....

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While Microsoft begs the Department of Justice not to break up the company, Linux continues to builds momentum. Today it is hard to a find a software company that isn't porting its products to Linux or forming a strategy to take advantage of Linux's burgeoning popularity.

This boom has created two classes of companies: the haves and the have-nots. I will focus my discussion on Red Hat Software versus Corel Corp. While Corel has more than one product for the Linux operating system, Corel does not come close to reaching the investor frenzy, which has taken a lock at Red Hat.

A big reason for this is lack of confidence in Corel's senior management level. In the past two weeks, Corel has seen its Chief Financial Officer and Vice-president of Marketing leave. Red Hat continues to attract top management such as Matthew Szulik, and Eric Hahn, former CTO at Netscape Communications, among other luminers.

Indeed the rise of Corel has been a miracle. Many investors have been writing off Corel as a company of the past. The company tried, unsuccessfully, to take on Microsoft in the office productivity arena. Its designer software, Corel Draw, has lost to Adobe Photoshop.

Then Corel gets a new lease on life with Corel WordPerfect and Corel Linux. These are impressive products and it is these products that convinced Corel CEO Dr. Michael Cowpland to aggressively transform Corel into a Linux company.

Today, Corel is essentially a Linux company. The company expects the bulk of its revenues to be derived from Linux by 2005.

Investors Have Long Memories

In late August 1997, Corel had burned many investors when Cowpland sold 2.4 million shares in Corel -- worth $20.4 million -- six weeks before the company reported unexpected bad financial reports.

Ever since then, investors have regained confidence in the company. Will Corel be able to regain its former shine with Linux?

Give Corel Linux a try and judge for yourself.

From everyone at 32BitsOnline, we wish you and your families a very Merry Christmas.

Ronny Ko is the Editor-in-Chief of 32BitsOnline Magazine, a multi-platform magazine founded on the idea that "There's more than one way to Compute."





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