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Network Associates Denies Reports It's For Sale

A full 24 hours after the first reports that Network Associates might be up for sale, a company spokeswoman Tuesday denied that management is trying to sell the company.

Focusing on the definition of what it means to be a public company, Network Associates Spokeswoman Jennifer Keavney effectively distanced the company from industry speculation of an acquisition by stating that while it "would need to legally consider offers that benefit its owners, the shareholders of Network Associates," the company was "not considering offers from Microsoft or any other company at this time."

Keavney's statement came almost 24-hour hours after Network Associates declined to comment to CRN on claims made by several Wall Street sources that it was quietly looking for a buyer.

Keavney did not dismiss the possibility of July 1 layoffs at Network Associates, as reported by CRN, Monday. (See story). "Network Associates has made a commitment to investors to achieve a 25 percent operating margin by the middle of 2005," she said when asked to confirm or deny July 1 layoffs.

In an April 22 press release, Network Associates said that to attain such an operating margin, "The company is taking several steps for example, fundamentally redesigning internal back office systems, strategically modifying product designs, and modifying Web services to the company's reseller and distribution partners, among other initiatives."

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