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July 8, 1993

BUYING AGAIN, NOVELL PAYS $17m FOR FLUENT AND ITS VIDEO SOFTWARE

By CBR Staff Writer

Novell Inc’s hunger for in-fill technologies to put in place all the elements it believes it will need to fulfil its vision of computing in the 21st Century shows no sign of abating, and its latest foray has seen it paying $17.5m for Fluent Inc of Natick, Massachusetts. The deal will probably result in a one-time write-off of assets of up to $15m in the third quarter ending July 31. Fluent develops video networking products that integrate full-motion video and audio into networked applications, and in January came out with FluentLinks, a NetWare Loadable Module version of its core software that enables multiple users to access and play motion video segments from a remote file server, using standard protocols and network topologies. Novell aims to exploit Fluent’s current NetWare-based software to deliver full-motion video over computer networks and support desktop computer multimedia standards. Video services across NetWare networks will lead in transforming multimedia from stand-alone applications to distributed network-based multimedia capabilities, Novell reckons. It says it will make network services for multimedia available in phases beginning next year with network server-based video playback that will integrate with existing client-desktop multimedia standards including Apple Computer Inc’s QuickTime and Microsoft Corp’s Video for Windows; it then aims to extend the services to support desktop video conferencing. Investors in Fluent included Intel Corp, Cirrus Logic Inc, Nynex Corp and Ing C Olivetti & Co SpA.

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