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Employees Wearing the 'Red Hat' Take Success in Stride

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DURHAM — It has been just over a month since Durham'sRed Hat Softwarewent public. The small company made $10 million in revenue last year, but right now on paper, it is worth more than $7 billion.

It appears that the success is just making Red Hat employees work harder.

Lots of people have been talking about Red Hat on Wall Street and here in the Triangle. The company's very successful initial public offering put the spotlight on the area, but Red Hat employees are taking success in stride.

Red Hat markets Linux, seen as real competition forMicrosoft.

CEO Bob Young says the company is five years into a 20-year plan.

"We're having a lot of fun doing this. It's pretty exciting to be part of something that is gaining as much momentum as we're benefiting from," said Young.

Red Hat stock shot from $14 to more than $135 in four weeks. Young says IPOs by other Linux-related companies will help build the market base.

Red Hat has already set up offices in Europe and last week in Japan. More growth is expected in the Triangle.

"As we find more customers, as we have to deploy resources to look after those customers, I expect that our facilities in North Carolina are going to expand at a similar pace," said Young.

The work pace has picked up at Red Hat. Young says he and co-founder Mark Ewing set out to fulfill the needs of Linux customers, and things have turned out well so far.

"It's amazing, you know, when you focus on your customers, just what you can achieve. Admittedly, we probably achieved more than either of us initially set out to," said Young.

Red Hat fluctuated Monday, closing down a little more than eleven points at 108.375. By comparison, the NASDAQ closed down more than 42 points.

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Tom Lawrence, Reporter
Jim Young, Photographer
John Clark, Web Editor

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