Novell Earnings Report Shows Linux Gains

Novell’s Linux investments are finally showing results as its Linux revenue of $61 million jumped 418 percent from last year’s fourth quarter. Novell Inc. announced its fourth fiscal quarter and fiscal year financial results, which ended Oct. 31, 2005, on Thursday.

For the quarter, Novell reported revenue of $320 million, compared to revenue of $301 million for the fourth fiscal quarter 2004. Nevertheless, net loss available to common stockholders for the quarter was $5 million or 1 cent loss per diluted common share. Last year’s fourth fiscal quarter 2004 net income available to common stockholders was $15 million, or 3 cents per diluted common share.

For the full 2005 fiscal year, Novell reported revenue of $1.198 billion and diluted net income available to common stockholders of $378 million, or 86 cents per diluted common share. This included a one-time $448 million net legal settlement with Microsoft. Comparatively, revenue for 2004 was $1.166 billion, and diluted net income available to common stockholders was $31 million, or 8 cents per diluted common share. During the fourth quarter, Novell’s Linux platform revenue included $46 million from sales of OES (Open Enterprise Server) and $15 million of revenue from other Linux products and services.

Sales of standalone subscriptions to SLES (SUSE Linux Enterprise Server), Novell’s flagship Linux, totaled 65,000 subscriptions in the quarter, excluding subscriptions sold under enterprise-wide licensing deals, up 137 percent sequentially and 216 percent on a year-over-year basis.

One such subscription deal, which was not reflected in the Linux platform revenue, with the UK’s National Health Service for approximately $40 million. This deal includes both Linux licenses and services.

For the full fiscal year 2005, Novell reported Linux platform revenue of $148 million, up 278 percent from fiscal 2004.

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