Tech Industry

BayStar begins selling SCO stock

Investment fund sells hundreds of thousands of shares, but still has major stake--and voice--in SCO's future.

BayStar Capital, the investment fund that arranged a $50 million cash infusion for the SCO Group, has begun selling its common shares.

BayStar and SCO arranged a deal in June in which the Linux litigator would buy back all 40,000 of BayStar's preferred shares for $13 million and 2.1 million shares of common stock. BayStar started selling those shares last week, according to Securities and Exchange Commission filings.

Though BayStar has sold only a small fraction of its stock so far, the move could be the beginning of a new chapter in which SCO no longer has to worry about its often-contentious relationship with BayStar. So far, though, BayStar still has a major say in the company's affairs: It still holds 2.2 million shares, about 12.5 percent of SCO's 17.5 million outstanding shares.

BayStar representatives did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The original $50 million investment, made in October 2003 by BayStar and Royal Bank of Canada, provided SCO with crucial funding to maintain its legal attack on Linux backers--IBM at the time, and now Novell and AutoZone. SCO and BayStar squabbled more than once about the deal, but settled their differences in August.

In numerous smaller transactions on each day between Sept. 20 and 27, BayStar sold a total of 249,800 of its 2.2 million SCO shares, with prices ranging from $3.40 to $3.70 per share. In addition, it also sold 25,000 shares on Sept. 1 for $3.96 each.