Investment banking and securities firm Goldman Sachs came away
from Red Hat's Analyst Day, held yesterday, maintaining a "market
outperform" rating on the company's stock and noting that the Red
Hat Network - key to the company's transition from shrinkwrap Linux
marketer to services company - shows some promise.
"In our view, the key takeaway is the company's transformation
from a Linux software vendor to an Internet infrastructure service
provider," read the summary the firm released this morning.
The report went on to say "though still in its very early
stages, we believe Red Hat Network could become a valuable conduit
between Red Hat and its end users."
Yesterday Red Hat also announced the hire of Kevin Thompson to
the position of Chief Financial Officer for the company. Thompson
has reiterated Red Hat's previous assertions that their revenues
will grow by 100% over last year's, with the company showing
profitability of $7.6 million in 2002.
Thompson also said the general slump in hardware vendor stocks
triggered by troubled dot-coms, which VA Linux blamed for sales
totalling $4 million less than expected in the latest quarter,
won't effect Red Hat:
"They sell hardware and software, we sell software and services.
We do not have nearly the dependence on the dot-coms and don't
expect that we will," said Thompson
Red Hat stock is currently trading about 4% lower than recent
averages, though analysts say the uncertainty of the US
Presidential election is causing a general slump in the market.