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Intel, Netscape, Others Buy Part of Linux Distributor

Today at ISPCON Fall '98, Red Hat Software, Inc., a leading distributor of the Linux operating system, announced that Intel, Netscape Communications Corporation, and venture capital firms Greylock and Benchmark Partners have taken minority equity positions in the company.

Red Hat builds, maintains, and provides technical support for the Red Hat operating system. Linux runs on Intel, Alpha, and Sun SPARC platforms. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Additionally, the firm announced it is establishing an Enterprise Computing Division, according to Red Hat president, Robert F. Young. The new division will offer enterprise-grade products and services to support global, mission-critical applications.

"As the growing number of users demonstrates, the Linux operating system is ready for enterprise-wide applications," Young said. "Red Hat intends to further extend its Linux leadership into the enterprise."

"Today's announcement reaffirms Netscape's commitment to Linux as a strategic enterprise-ready platform," said John Paul, senior vice president and general manager of the Server Products Division at Netscape. "Netscape's customers are demanding a manageable, scalable, and reliable Internet operating system for deploying the applications required in the net economy. Customers are finding that Linux provides the manageability, scalability, and reliability they require."

"Our investment in Red Hat demonstrates the technological value of the open source development model for technologies such as operating systems," stated William S. Kaiser, general partner at Greylock. "They have done a great job of supporting the open source development model and delivering the benefits of that model to a growing number of Linux users."

"Since July, the five leading providers of database software--Oracle, Informix, Computer Associates, Sybase, and IBM--have all announced plans to support Red Hat's Linux OS," stated Red Hat's Young. "We believe that their OS strategies, combined with today's announced investments, continue to fuel the adoption of Linux as a robust and secure operating system."

Red Hat Software, based in Triangle Research Park, N.C., is a software development company that sells products and provides services related to Linux.

Red Hat's mission is to provide professional tools to computing professionals. The company manufactures shrink-wrapped software versions of the Linux operating system, making it accessible to the broadest possible range of computer users.