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End of the Road for Eazel?

May 12, 2001, 06:15 (61 Talkback[s])

A pair of articles published today claim Eazel, the company behind GNOME's Nautilus graphical shell, has either already ceased operations or will do so next week. Neither piece is particularly rich in verifiable detail or attributed beyond "sources close to the company."

Passing comment is made in a column on DotComScoop.com, which reads:

"Palo Alto, CA-based Eazel , an open source software firm, will cease operations today, according to a source close to the company. Eazel was building softwares for the Linux operating system and had distribution deals with Red Hat, Sun and Dell. The company closed an $11 million round of financing in April 2000 from leading venture capital firm Accel Partners."

At least one Eazel employee on IRC this evening said the company isn't formally out of operation as of today, which discredits the DotComScoop in terms of its timeline, though the lack of a formal announcement from Eazel at this point would explain reticence on the part of individual employees to comment on the company's fate.

A more detailed item in the RumorMill column at CNET News.com stops short of declaring the company dead, and says CEO Mike Boich issued a standard "no comment" before saying a board meeting will be held early next week to make decisions, presumably on Eazel's fate.

That same column also holds out the possibility that fellow GNOME Foundation member Sun Microsystems may well have pulled a decision to invest in the company at the last minute.

Eazel laid off 40 employees in mid-March despite partnerships with Sun, Dell Computers, and Red Hat, all centered around deployment of Nautilus as a default file manager for systems and software shipped by the companies.

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