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Novell Reports Financial Results for Second Fiscal Quarter 2004

WALTHAM, Mass. | May 24, 2004

Novell, Inc. (NASDAQ:NOVL) today announced financial results for its second fiscal quarter ended April 30, 2004. For the quarter, Novell reported revenues of $294 million, compared to revenues of $276 million for the second fiscal quarter 2003. Net income in the second fiscal quarter 2004 was $10 million. After consideration of a $26 million deemed dividend related to the beneficial conversion feature of preferred stock and related preferred stock cash dividends associated with IBM's investment in Novell, the net loss available to common shareholders was $0.04 loss per share. This compared to a net loss of $29 million, or $0.08 loss per share, for the second fiscal quarter 2003.

On a non-GAAP basis, adjusted net income for the second fiscal quarter 2004 was $14 million, or $0.03 per share, which excludes the effect of the preferred stock deemed dividend of $26 million, restructuring charges of $5 million, investment impairments of $1 million and a $2 million gain on a sale of property, plant and equipment. This compares to a non-GAAP adjusted net loss for the second fiscal quarter 2003 of $7 million, or $0.02 loss per share, which excludes primarily $25 million in charges from adjustments to facility-related restructuring and merger liabilities, and impaired investments. Full details on Novell’s reported results, including a reconciliation of the non-GAAP adjusted results, are included in the financial schedules that are a part of this release.

For the first six months of fiscal 2004, Novell reported revenue of $561 million and net income of $21 million. After considering the impact of the preferred stock deemed and cash dividends, the net loss available to common shareholders in this period was $0.01 loss per share. For the first six months of fiscal 2003, the company reported revenue of $536 million and a net loss of $41 million, or $0.11 loss per share.

“In the quarter, Novell showed continued improvement in its financial performance during what is still a challenging market environment for the IT industry,” said Jack L. Messman, Novell chairman, president and chief executive officer. “We are encouraged that NetWare®-related revenue in the quarter declined only 2 percent from the year ago period, or a 5 percent decline after adjusting for foreign currency effects. This figure compares to the prior year's decline rate in NetWare-related revenue of 12 percent, after adjusting for foreign currency effects. We believe this slowing of the rate of NetWare-related revenue decline reflects a favorable response from our customers to our Linux* strategy.”

In the second fiscal quarter 2004, foreign currency exchange rates positively impacted total revenue by approximately $12 million and had a negative impact on net income of less than $1 million year over year. Also in the quarter, G&A expenses were lower due to a reduction of $5 million in legal reserves relating to favorable developments in current litigation matters.

On the balance sheet, cash and short-term investments were $636 million at the end of the second fiscal quarter 2004, compared with $605 million at the end of the prior quarter. This increase in cash and short-term investments includes the $50 million preferred stock investment by IBM and negative cash flow from operations of $28 million, which was due primarily to an increase in current accounts receivable. Days sales outstanding (DSO) in accounts receivable increased to 67 days at the end of the second fiscal quarter 2004, up from 60 days in the prior quarter. Deferred revenues were $296 million at the end of the second fiscal quarter 2004, up $29 million or 11 percent year over year.

A summary of Novell’s vision, mission and strategy can be accessed on the Novell® Web site at: www.novell.com/company/ir/qresults.

Conference call notification and Web access detail
A live Webcast of a Novell conference call to discuss the quarter will be broadcast at 5PM EDT May 24, 2004, from Novell's Investor Relations Web page: http://www.novell.com/company/ir/qresults/. The domestic conference call dial-in number is 888-323-5254, password “Novell”, and the international dial-in number is +1-773-756-4625, password “Novell”.

The call will be archived on the Web site approximately 15 minutes after its conclusion, and will be available for telephone playback through midnight, June 7. The domestic toll-free replay number is 800-216-3035, and the international replay number is +1-402-220-3757.

A copy of this press release is posted on Novell's Web site at: http://www.novell.com/company/ir/qresults/.

Legal notice regarding forward looking statements
This press release includes statements that are not historical in nature and that may be characterized as “forward-looking statements,” including those related to future financial and operating results, benefits and synergies of the company’s brands and strategies, future opportunities and the growth of the market for open source solutions. You should be aware that Novell’s actual results could differ materially from those contained in the forward-looking statements, which are based on current expectations of Novell management and are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties, including, but not limited to, Novell’s ability to integrate acquired operations and employees, Novell’s success in executing its Linux strategies, Novell’s ability to deliver on its one Net vision of the Internet, Novell’s ability to take a competitive position in the Linux industry, business conditions and the general economy, market opportunities, potential new business strategies, competitive factors, sales and marketing execution, shifts in technologies or market demand and the other factors described in Novell’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the 2003 fiscal year. Novell disclaims any intention or obligation to update any forward-looking statements as a result of developments occurring after the date of this press release.

About Novell

Novell, Inc. (Nasdaq: NOVL) is a leading provider of infrastructure software and services to over 50,000 customers in 43 countries. With more than 20 years of experience in data center, workgroup and desktop solutions, Novell's 6,000 employees, 5,000 partners and support centers around the world are meeting customer requirements for identity-driven computing and Linux solutions. By providing enterprise-class software and support for commercial and open source software, Novell delivers increased operating flexibility and choice at a lower total cost of ownership. More information about Novell can be found at http://www.novell.com.

Novell, NetWare and Ximian are registered trademarks; exteNd, Nsure and Nterprise are trademarks; and Ngage is a service mark of Novell, Inc. in the United States and other countries. SUSE is a registered trademark of SUSE LINUX AG, a Novell company. *All third-party trademarks are the property of their respective owners.


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