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Ottawa Citizen: Red Hat boss looks through rose-coloured glasses

Apr 24, 2000, 12:40 (1 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Bert Hill)

"Talk about moving at Internet speed: Four months ago, Red Hat Inc. and Robert Young, its Canadian founder and chairman, were riding the stock market boom for Linux operating systems. Today, Red Hat stock is trading at $26.25 -- 81 per cent below its $143 high (all figures in U.S. dollars) and most other Linux stocks are in the same trouble. Citizen reporter Bert Hill talked to Mr. Young at a recent Linux industry trade show in Montreal."

"...Q: Red Hat and other Linux company stocks have plunged almost 80 per cent since December. What do you tell people who bought Red Hat at high prices?

A: Keep in mind that, in the short term, stock prices are being driven by day traders. I believe there is an efficient stock market which holds true in the long term, but not in the short term.

"The message I give to our shareholders is that our goal is to build a great technology company ... and we figured it would take us 20 years. The IPO was simply a tactical step on that road. So whenever someone asks me about the share price, I basically say check back with me in five years. I'll take responsibility for the stock price in five years; I can't take responsibility for daily fluctuations."

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