Novell and Sun as private companies?

Novell has a prime opportunity to use its crumbling stock price to its advantage.

The Register correctly points out that at current valuations and bank balances, Sun Microsystems and Novell would make a lot of sense as private companies. I don't have enough data on Sun to make a good argument there, but I've long held that Novell would benefit tremendously from a few years off the Wall Street radar.

Novell is doing much better in its Linux business, but I continue to believe that as a company it's forced to stick with dying product lines that it would happily shelve or sell but for the pressure to deliver quarterly numbers. Going private would relieve Novell of undue outside pressure, giving it room to strengthen its core business value proposition.

There are lots of benefits to being a public company, but also significant downsides. Novell would be better off as a private company in the short term, in my opinion. Now would be a good time to make it happen.

Tech Culture
About the author

    Matt Asay is chief operating officer at Canonical, the company behind the Ubuntu Linux operating system. Prior to Canonical, Matt was general manager of the Americas division and vice president of business development at Alfresco, an open-source applications company. Matt brings a decade of in-the-trenches open-source business and legal experience to The Open Road, with an emphasis on emerging open-source business strategies and opportunities. He is a member of the CNET Blog Network and is not an employee of CNET. You can follow Matt on Twitter @mjasay.


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