Gateway Dons Red Hat, Offers Linux

Red Hat, Inc. (Nasdaq: RHAT), which develops and distributes commercial versions of the Linux operating system, has signed up PC manufacturer Gateway (Nasdaq: GTW) as an authorized reseller. Red Hat announced today that Gateway will now be able to install Red Hat’s Linux-based operating system when requested by customers.

“Gateway customers are asking for Linux solutions and the freedom of open source environments,” said Ron Smith, vice president of marketing for Gateway Business. “We believe that Red Hat has the leading Linux offering and support, delivering our customers the best possible open source solution for their business needs.”

Gateway’s built-to-order servers will now be certified as “Red Hat ready.” Gateway employees will be trained and certified as Red Hat certified engineers. Gateway joins a select group of Red Hat Partners, including other top PC manufacturers such as Compaq, Dell, IBM and Hewlett-Packard. Red Hat’s investors include Intel, IBM, Oracle, Compaq, Dell, Novell and Netscape.

Red Hat Expands Into Japan

In related news today, Red Hat announced the opening of Red Hat Japan. The new operation in Japan features a new, expanded headquarters and staff that will deliver Red Hat software and services directly to Japanese customers.

“Japan has always been an important market for Red Hat Linux and open source software,” said Bob Young, CEO of Red Hat. With the opening of Red Hat Japan, we can better serve our Pacific Rim customers and the rest of the fast-growing Japanese open source software market.”

Japanese software industry veteran Masanobu Hirano has been named president of Red Hat Japan. Hirano was previously the president of Hyperion Japan, a subsidiary of Hyperion Solutions, which develops budgeting and financial reporting and analysis software. Hirano was also a vice president and board member of Japanese software company ASCII Corporation.

Stock Impact

Shares of Red Hat were up 1-13/16 to 86-3/4 in early trading today after the news. Early this morning, Red Hat received a buy rating from Hambrecht & Quist and a market outperform rating from Goldman Sachs. Goldman Sachs was the lead underwriter for Red Hat’s initial public offering, while Hambrecht & Quist was a co-manager. Red Hat, which went public on August 11 at $14 (US$), is one of the top-performing IPOs of the year, having climbed more than 500 percent since going public.

Shares of Gateway, which have been on a dramatic upswing in the last two months, climbed 1-3/16 to 99-11/16.

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