Cold Realities For Novell: "It's not too late for Messman to get the company back on track. Analysts praise Ronald W. Hovsepian, Novell's executive vice-president of worldwide field operations, who completed the salesforce makeover. He cut the number of products they were hawking from 300 to about 80. And he instituted a more aggressive sales culture. 'We obviously had to change a lot of the DNA,' Hovsepian says. Analysts see him as the new heir apparent to the corner office, thanks to a go-for-the-jugular style that Novell lacked in the past.
Will it be enough to shift Novell's direction? Maybe. A wild card is the support from computer makers Hewlett-Packard (HPQ ), Dell and IBM. 'There's a huge benefit to having two [Linux] suppliers. Customers have choice,' says Scott Handy, IBM's vice-president of worldwide Linux. The three giants might push business Novell's way. With their help, Novell may yet turn into a leader again. For the sake of Linux, it better happen. For the sake of Messman, it better happen soon."
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