In March 2008, Red Hat CEO Jim Whitehurst predicted that his company would be the first pure play open source software vendor to reach $1 billion in revenue. That forecast has nearly come to fruition. According to the organization's latest earnings report, Red Hat raked in $909.3 million during fiscal 2011, an increase of 22% on-year. Fourth quarter revenue totaled $244.8 million, up 25% from the year-ago period, while quarterly and yearly subscription revenue rose 21% and 24%.

"With record bookings and billings in the fourth quarter, we are on a run rate to become the first pure-play open source company to achieve a billion dollars in revenues next fiscal year, a milestone achievement for Red Hat and the open source community," said Whitehurst. He attributes the growth to strong demand by enterprise customers who are preparing their infrastructure for cloud computing, as Red Hat is increasingly focused on providing cloud-based products and services.

"This year we focused on growth with aggressive hiring for sales and engineering, launched major product releases and invested in technologies focused on cloud computing. These investments produced greater than 20% growth in revenues and non-GAAP operating income for both the quarter and the year. At the same time, we increased non-GAAP operating margins by 110 basis points and improved cash flow. It was a good year," said Executive Vice President and CFO Charlie Peters.