The New For Profit
August 6th 2005
The Mountain View CA Mozilla
Foundation announced Wednesday it will launch a for-profit
subsidiary that will continue to develop the Firefox web browser and
Thunderbird email client. The subsidiary, called Mozilla
Corporation was necessary to eliminate legal and tax issues that
might arise if the Mozilla foundation tried to make money from its
The company assured skeptics
that they were not selling out the open-source development
community. The profits from the Corporation would be invested back
into the non-profit foundation and there will be no shareholders,
stock options or dividends.
Mozilla is not plagued by some
of the security issues Microsoft’s Internet Explorer (IE) users have
experienced. Mozilla also uses a tabbed format that allows for
multiple browsers to be open at the same time without using up more
tasks. It usually loads quicker than the Microsoft browser, but
some websites will only function with IE.
Since the Mozilla project's
launch by Netscape in 1998, the foundation has depended on unpaid
open-source developers. The new corporation is expected to employ
between 30 and 35 people at a reasonable salary, and no one will be
getting rich, according to the foundation. In the future, Mozilla
might consider letting other companies hire their employees to
develop new features.
The foundation has made
assurances that Firefox will remain
free to the user. Sponsors like Google have helped in this
regard. An undisclosed amount of revenue has been generated by
allowing Google to incorporate a search tool in the browser.
Creative sales techniques have kept the foundation afloat.
Firefox has an estimated 10%
market share with more than 75 million downloads of the popular
browser. Mitchell Baker, a board member of the Mozilla Foundation,
will serve as the corporation's president as new methods of revenue
generation are explored. The foundation is open to new ideas in this
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Best Syndication Staff Writer
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