p2pnet.net News:- The other shoe has dropped.
Microsoft recently said it would pay Novell Inc $536 million to, “resolve all antitrust claims … relating to Novell’s NetWare product and all of the other products and businesses which it currently owns”.
But, conspicuous in Microsoft’s announcement was that nothing had been agreed with Novell with respect to its antitrust claims relating to WordPerfect.
Novell how now rectified that, filing a lawsuit in the United States District Court in Utah seeking unspecified damages.
Its claims arise from, “Microsoft’s efforts to eliminate competition in the office productivity applications market during the time that Novell owned the WordPerfect word processing application and the Quattro Pro spreadsheet application,” it says in a statement.
Among other things, Novell says Microsoft, “withheld certain critical technical information about Windows from Novell, thereby impairing Novell’s ability to develop new versions of WordPerfect and other Novell office productivity applications.”
It also alleges Microsoft built technologies into Windows that were designed to exclude WordPerfect and other Novell applications from relevant markets.
“In addition, Novell asserts that Microsoft used its monopoly power to prevent hardware partners from offering WordPerfect and other applications to customers,” says, stating its lawsuit is, “based in part on facts proved by the United States Government in its successful antitrust case against Microsoft, in which Microsoft was found to have unlawfully maintained a monopoly in the market for personal computer operating systems by eliminating competition in related markets”.
Novell bought WordPerfect when it and the WordPerfect Corp merged in June, 1994.
“In a related transaction during the same time period, Novell purchased Quattro Pro, a spreadsheet product, from Borland International,” says Novell. “The combined value of WordPerfect and Quattro Pro at the time of the transactions was over $1 billion. Both WordPerfect and Quattro Pro were sold to Corel Corporation in March of 1996 for approximately $170 million.
“WordPerfect’s share of the word processing market was almost 50 percent in 1990, but fell to less than 10 percent by the time Novell sold WordPerfect and related applications in 1996. Microsoft Word’s share of the word processing market rose from approximately 20 percent prior to 1990 to a monopoly share of approximately 90 percent by 1996.”
antitrust claims – MS to pay Novell $536M, p2pnet, November 8, 2004
unspecified damages – Novell Files WordPerfect Antitrust Lawsuit Against Microsoft, Novell Inc, November 12, 2004