Wednesday, April 30, 2008


4/30 SNR: SCO v. Novell, Day 2

So we're halfway there, wherever 'there' is. I haven't seen any courtroom reports yet, but Al P. has the official minutes here.

The minutes mention that today SCO begged for something called "involuntary dismissal", which if granted would make the case go away, never to return. No word on what grounds (if any) they think this is justified. I suspect the details will be rather amusing.

Updated: GL's coverage of Day 2 is up now. Not much detail yet, though. PJ typically updates the existing article when new info arrives, instead of creating a new article, so it's worth checking back again later.

Until we hear today's news from SLC, here are some articles about yesterday's thrilling courtroom drama. Most are from local UT media, by reporters who've been covering the SCO saga for a while now. So I'd imagine they all attended the trial yesterday.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008


4/29 SNR: SCO v. Novell, Day 1

At GL, the story so far.

Based on the trickle of news so far, it ounds like we haven't come to the eventful part of the trial yet. Assuming there's going to be an eventful part. I still suspect SCO's going to weasel out of this somehow. I don't know how. I don't even have any serious guesses about how. But still, I'm not sure I'll believe this is for real until there's a verdict. And maybe not even then.

Until we hear anything further, here's today's batch of trial preview stories:

Oh, and the Novell trial gets a quick mention in MOG's puff piece about the FranklinCovey deal. Btw, she says the FC deal is a "revenue-sharing" arrangement. Which (if true) means SCO only gets to keep a portion of any Me Inc. revenue from the deal, assuming said revenue ever exists. Somehow this is good news for SCO, though, probably because they're leveraging proactive synergies outside the box, or some damn thing.

Monday, April 28, 2008


4/28 SNR: "Could it really happen!?" Edition

So unless a miracle of the bad kind happens in the next few hours, tomorrow morning will see the start of the long-awaited, long-delayed SCO v. Novell trial. I can't believe it myself, but it really does seem as if they're prepared to go through with it this time. Both sides have filed trial briefs this time, although SCO's arrived in redacted form. It's not clear to me what they hope to gain by that; anything in the trial brief will presumably show up at trial a few days later. I suppose they might try to shoo spectators out of the courtroom for parts of the trial that involve ultra-double-secret Methods And Concepts -- assuming Kimball goes along, of course.

So PJ has a preview of how the trial "should" play out. I'm still not convinced, though. I can't think of a convincing scenario in which SCO delays the trial once again. I haven't seen anyone else come up with such a scenario, either. But I still don't quite believe it's going to happen.

This is what I suspect will turn out to be the key point: Tomorrow is merely the beginning of the trial, not the end. The thing's supposed to take four days, which means it might, or might not. And after those four days, Kimball will rule on the case at some indeterminate point in the future. And once that's happened, SCO's already promised to appeal, on the grounds that the (presumable) verdict is not what they had in mind when they first sued Novell, and they'd like a do-over, please.

The best possible outcome for SCO this week is to be found liable for $0, and that would be a bit surprising. If that happens, I imagine their stock might go up temporarily, and the Norris deal might go forward, and things will seem relatively peachy for a while... until it's time to go ahead with the IBM case.

A more realistic outcome is that SCO's found liable for some or all of the $30M Novell's asking for. There's been some discussion in the last few days about whether the $30M should go to Novell, or back to Sun & Microsoft. Truth be told, I don't particularly care, so long as SCO doesn't have it. If, as seems likely, SCO can't give any money back because they've spent it all on lawyers, it's not great news exactly, but it's still $30M they don't have anymore. So that's something, I guess.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008


4/23 SNR

Ok, this is a bit late, as usual. I got started compiling a list of news stories about the dead SNCP deal, and never quite got around to posting it. It'd be a shame for all that work to go to waste, I guess, so I'll attach that at the end in case you really feel like reading old news. But first, the new and newish stuff...

So here are those old SNCP links I promised. FWIW.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008


4/2 SNR: $100 Million? What $100 Million?

Um, as I was saying about that $100M buyout deal... well, deal's off, sorry. Seems that the chorus of vehement objections had the desired effect, and -- as it turns out -- there is actually a downside to utterly failing to meet the basic requirements of a bankruptcy reorg plan, like showing that the buyer actually has the money, and that you have some sort of business plan in hand so you won't be back in BK court again in a year's time. Stuff like that.

So they're insisting the deal isn't completely dead, and they're going to restructure it as a straight asset purchase instead of the initial intricate proposal (which I havek to admit I couldn't make head or tail of, myself). So maybe we'll hear from SNCP again. Although SCO's also never admitted that the DaimlerChrysler suit is lost for good, even though there's no longer any such thing as "DaimlerChrysler".

My personal hunch is that SNCP won't be up for another bite at the apple. Certainly not an asset purchase type of bite. The problem with any future asset purchase is the same thing that sank the York deal. SCO would have to come clean and state specifically exactly what it owns, and be able to prove it. They've gone to ridiculous lengths over the last 5 years to avoid doing that, and I doubt they'll start now. And this time around everyone's watching a bit more closely; already the BK trustee has cautioned them not to try selling anything they don't own. There's no way to spin that as a good sign, not that I can think of.

The really great thing about the deal falling through (other than, obviously, the deal falling through) is that there isn't enough time left to put a new deal together before the Novell trial. The SNCP proposal would've expired if it hadn't been approved by April 28th, the day before the trial, which suggests the numbers only penciled out if there was still some doubt about the outcome of the Novell case. If another deal appears in the future, which is far from certain, it will happen after the case is over, and Kimball decides how much SCO owes to Novell. That's going to change the whole landscape, and not in SCO's favor.

Now, if they'd filed a viable plan in a timely fashion and generally played by the rules, there might've been time to fix any deficiencies before the 29th, a.k.a. Doomsday. But instead they tried to railroad the thing through the BK court at the last minute, and now there's no time for a Plan B. Oh, well. C'est la vie.

I think SCO's main goal is to stave off the Novell trial in any way they can. That's what the BK filing was about, and that may be what the York & SNCP deals were both about. And they certainly weren't in a hurry to get the trial going before the BK filing, either. Unless they can find a way to get the BK stay reimposed in Delaware, I think the focus now shifts back to Utah, and figuring out if there's any last-minute way to game the system and push the trial date off a few more months. I'm not a lawyer (have I mentioned that yet?) so I don't know what their odds might be. My hunch is that they aren't good, though.

The news coverage of the latest twist ought to be good. I'll try to do another roundup tomorrow and cover at least the choice bits. I'm serious. Or if not tomorrow, at least some time soon, before the Novell trial at least.

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