March 18, 1997 11:45 AM ET
Market reacts cautiously to Schmidt hire at Novell
By Margaret Kane

  Shares of Novell Inc. rose slightly in morning trading, as investors digested the announcement that Sun Microsystems Inc.'s former chief technology officer, Eric Schmidt, would be the company's new chief executive.

Novell was up .938 cents to $9.50 at 10:30.

Although Schmidt was reported to be on the short list of the company's CEO candidates, the news still caught some investors by surprise.

Gina Sokolow, an analyst at Wertheim Schroder & Co., in New York, who covers Sun, said Schmidt's loss "is not going to be pleasant [for Sun]."

"I think he [Schmidt] is wonderful. A visionary, an excellent manager, he's well respected," Sokolow said.

Sun's stock was down slightly this morning, falling 12.5 cents to $28.75.

But Schmidt doesn't have to worry if his old employer's stock drops. The former CTO recently sold off more than 60,000 shares of Sun for at least $1.8 million.

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