What made NeXT worth $427M when SJ had it acquired by APL in '96/'97?

Started by zaxel, October 26, 2023, 08:44:25 PM

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 What made NeXT worth $427M when SJ had it acquired by APL in '96/'97?
Can anyone please explain this to me as well as share with me evidence to justify your answer,
I am looking to understand how APL valued NeXT for this price...
Thank you very much for your consideration,


So... there were a number of reasons...

1. Getting Steve Jobs back.  Part of the deal was that Jobs would help to refine Apple's approach as he did when he was originally there.  Apple, during this time, had lost its way.  They were suffering from a lot of issues with products and weren't offering anything compelling or unique.

2. OPENSTEP/NeXTSTEP software.  Apple had been in the market for a very long time for a new OS since OS9 was starting to show its age.  This formed the basis for MacOS X, now simply macOS, the iPhone and many other innovations.

3. Talent.  Many of the employees working for NeXT were leaders in their respective fields.  Avie Tevannian, for instance, helped to create the Mach kernel.  Jean-Marie Hullot created InterfaceBuilder.  Keith Olfs (yes, the font was named for him) was the graphical designer responsible for much of the look of OPENSTEP/NeXTSTEP.

4. Patents and IP... NeXT had protected a lot of its software with a large number of patents.  Apple acquired all of these patents when it bought NeXT.

All of this, plus I am sure other factors, made it well worth what was paid.  I am not sure Apple paid ENOUGH to be honest.  I don't know the financials... stock price, etc... I will leave that to others, but given what they were getting out of the deal Apple definitely made out since the acquisition has positioned them as one of the most valuable companies in history.

Gregory John Casamento
GNUstep Lead Developer