UnXis acquires SCO’s Unix assets

At the end of last January it was announced that UnXis, Inc. had acquired SCO’s Unix assets auctioned in last September. Since SCO was in Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection status it was necessary to have the approval from the Delaware court that has the competence for the operation supervision. Last week the OK has arrived so now the acquisition is complete but what do we know about the buyer?

UnXis, Inc. is a relatively new company set up specifically to purchase SCO’s assets with the intention to continue their development to provide up-to-date Unix solutions and to create cloud systems as well. In the press release issued by UnXis there’s mention of a $25 million investment over the next eighteen months for this task. All of this under the guidance of CEO Richard A. Bolandz, who has over twenty years of experience as an executive in several companies where he managed business development and technologies commercialization.

At the moment of SCO’s assets acquisition UnXis Vice President Eric Le Blanc had immediately stated that they intend to have a continuity with the SCO work keeping the bulk of the workforce in the departments of technology, sales and support. This way UnXis wants to keep the best relationship with SCO’s customers and in time it wants to expand its market, including the cloud computing one.

So far so good, the problem is that UnXis stated it has the Unix and Unixware trademarks but at the end of the various trials that have seen SCO trying to assert such claims against Novell the result was that SCO had only a license for these products, as explained in detail in an article on the Groklaw site.

What’s happening? Last year Groklaw had already published an article concerning the auction while in February another article commented on the purchase of SCO’s assets by UnXis: both articles look into the curiously close relationship between the two companies.

When a company or at least part of it is sold due to financial problems it can happen that some of its former executives and partners create a new company to buy the old one but given SCO’s history in its fight against competitors in the Unix field and in particular Linux the statement about the Unix trademark may sound like a new declaration of war.

Over the years Groklaw has provided us with all details about the events related to the SCO’s lawsuits concerning Unix intellectual property. I want to thank its founder Pamela Jones for the extraordinary work she has done. She announced that new articles on Groklaw will cease on May 16, believing that her work was finished. Maybe she should rethink.

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