In Business This Week: HEADLINER
MARC ANDREESSEN: NERVOUS AND SHAKY AT NETSCAPE?
A CASE OF POOR TIMING: Netscape Communications co-founder Marc Andreessen registered to sell 25% of his stock (375,000 shares) on the heels of the company's $88 million fourth-quarter loss.
Is he losing faith? Andreessen says no. "My confidence in Netscape has never been higher," he says. So why sell? It's just time to diversify, he says. "I can't have all my wealth in Netscape."
What's worse, Netscape General Counsel Roberta Katz and Executive Vice-President Mike Homer are also unloading shares. Katz's sale was prompted by her move to the San Francisco area from Seattle and the purchase of a new home. "This is an ever greater commitment to Netscape," she says. For Homer, selling 100,000 shares is part of a quarterly diversification gambit.
Still, Netscape's stock is trading at about 20--less than a quarter of its high--making this an odd time to sell. Says analyst Robert Gabele at insider-trading tracker CDA/Investnet: "This shows a lack of confidence in the future."By Steve Hamm in San Mateo, Calif.