In his usual man-of-a-few-words manner today, Jean-Manuel Croset, Mandriva COO, announced that enough funds have been secured to allow Mandriva to keep its doors open and continue development. With Croset saying little else, users at least have a nugget of good news to sustain them.
Last month Croset solicited user input as to the direction the company might go. He specifically mentioned Mandriva's strong commitment to desktop Linux, leading one to think he'd really like to lead the company to a more community-based desktop distribution model. But as we learned from watching the formation of The Document Foundation and The Mageia Foundation, it takes a tremendous effort from many skilled contributors to be successful. Mandriva had several commercial ventures and even less has been disclosed concerning those. Shareholders, like those at Mandriva, would rather earn dividends, so one might think of the Red Hat/Fedora business model... except that's what Mandriva SA has been trying to do for years. They just never could find their niche in the enterprise sector.
One of the biggest problems for Mandriva now is that many of their most talented developers and leaders have jumped ship for the promise of Mageia or ROSA (and elsewhere). So, Mandriva isn't even starting where it left off. It isn't the same company, or distro, anymore.
The only other bit of news found in Croset's post was that some kind of decision as to what Mandriva is going to do should be coming our way sometime in May.
Mandriva has always found a way to survive so far, but this time the slog back seems like a tough climb. Many feel a bit nostalgic about this one time innovator, but everyone else is wondering if Mandriva can do it again?