Novell in Talks with Buyers, WSJ Reports

Software developer Novell (NASDAQ: NOVL) is in discussions with at least two buyers with an eye towards selling the company in segments, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal.

VMware (NYSE: VMW), maker of software infrastructure is one of the interested buyers, according to the report that cited sources familiar with the matter.  The sources said that VMware is interested in purchasing Novell’s SUSE Linux operating system business. It is yet unclear how much the Linux operating system holdings are worth.

Meanwhile, private equity firm Attachmate, a firm owned by Golden Gate Capital and Francisco Partners, may be interested in purchasing the rest of Novell’s assets, according to the report.

The terms of any deal are still being discussed, the sources said, and a final deal could still break down.

Novell decided to sell itself six months ago after rejecting an offer from Elliot Associates hedge fund. For the year thus far, Novell reported revenue of $605 million and profit of $56 million.