"S&P raised the corporate credit rating on Red Hat to 'BB'
from 'BB-' to reflect its consistent operating performance and
improved capital structure. S&P said that the outlook is
stable. Keep in mind that this is still a "junk bond" rating, but
it only has to go above "BB+" up to "BBB-" to reach investment
"Also noted are the relatively narrow business profile and
modest operating scale, as well as rapid technology evolution. If
you read into the "barriers to entry" of smaller Linux players, it
almost sounds like S&P believes that it is getting a lock in
the Linux space for computers. Analyst Martha Toll-Reed said, "We
believe these concerns partly are offset by barriers to entry
provided by the large number of independent software and hardware
vendors which certify their products to work with Red Hat, as well
as liquidity, balance sheet strength and cash flow that are good
for the rating level."