Mandrakesoft To Acquire Conectiva
Overview of the Mandrake-Conectiva Acquisition
Mike Angelo -- 28 February 2005 (C)
Two well-known Linux companies, Mandrakesoft (stock symbol MDKFF) and Conectiva, announced plans Thursday for Mandrakesoft to purchase Conectiva for $2.3-million US ($1.79-million EUR) in stock. Mandrake's acquisition of Conectiva strengthens Mandrake's position among the top-tier Linux distribution providers.
Both Mandrake and Conectiva develop, maintain, and sell GNU-Linux distributions. GNU-Linux is a major computer operating system, along with BSD, Mac OS X, Unix, and Microsoft Windows.
However, unlike Mac OS X, Unix, and MS Windows, GNU-Linux is open source and free software. Mandrakesoft and Conectiva grab the free GNU-Linux OS, tweak it, and then add a collection of applications to produce a package known as a Linux distribution. Please see About Linux Distributions in the right sidebar.
While in a financial sense Mandrakesoft is acquiring Conectiva, organizationally it is more in the nature of merger of two companies with common goals, similar infrastructures, and comparable products -- but different geographical markets.
In an e-mail discussion about the Conectiva acquisition with MandrakeLinux founder, Gaël Duval, we mentioned: We are going to call it an acquisition in our story. Do you have any comments about that?
As you read through this article, the excerpts from the acquisition press release, and the ensuing telephone press conference, which MozillaQuest Magazine attended, you will notice this spirit of organizational merger. For example - - -
According to a 24 February 2005, joint, Mandrakesoft and Conectiva press release:
That sounds more like a partnership for common product development and marketing rather than an acquisition or a merger for that matter.
CEO François Bancilhon Outlines Mandrake-Conectiva Plan
At a telephone press conference attended by MozillaQuest Magazine, Thursday, Mandrakesoft CEO, François Bancilhon, promised Mandrake-Conectiva will maintain its strong commitment to free and open source software (FOSS) and will continue providing a free version of its Linux Distribution. Although no name for the after-acquisition company has been articulated specifically, François Bancilhon referred to the after-acquisition company as Mandrakesoft-Conectiva during Thursday's press conference.
François Bancilhon also promised to maintain Mandrake-Conectiva as a world-class Linux distribution provider and to expand Mandrake-Conectiva's worldwide presence. And he promised that Mandrake-Conectiva would continue its strong investment in technology.
Jaques Rosenzvaig, Conectiva CEO added:
Mandrake-Conectiva plans to maintain its strong support for KDE and desktop Linux. It also will support the server/enterprise side of the OS market.
At the 24 February press conference, this writer asked: Mandrake has been very supportive of KDE, is this going to continue?
NewsForge's Joe Barr asked: Will the combined firm lean toward either the desktop or the server or do both?
Plans call for the combined Mandrake-Conectiva company to merge their products over time.
At the February 24 press conference, NewsForge's Joe Barr asked: When will the first joint offering be available and what will it be called?
Paris will be the headquarters for Mandrake-Conectiva. However, plans are to have Mandrakesoft's Conectiva counterparts in Brazil well-integrated into Mandrake-Conectiva product research and development and in business development strategies.
Responding to a question about Mandrake-Conectiva's infrastructure from Geek.com's Brian Osborne, François Bancilhon stated:
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