Quarterdeck Office Systems

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Quarterdeck Office Systems
Fate Acquired by Symantec
Successor Symantec
Founded 1982
Defunct 1998
Headquarters Marina del Rey, California
United States
Products Quarterdeck Expanded Memory Manager, DESQview, DESQview/X,

Quarterdeck Office Systems, later Quarterdeck Corporation (NASDAQ: QDEK), was an American computer software company. It was founded by Therese Myers[1][2] and Gary Pope in 1981[3] and incorporated in 1982. Their offices were initially located at 150 Pico Boulevard in Santa Monica, California and later at 13160 Mindanao Way in Marina del Rey, California, as well as a sales and technical support unit located in Clearwater, Florida. In the 1990s, they had a European office in Dublin, Ireland. Their most famous products were the Quarterdeck Expanded Memory Manager, DESQview, CleanSweep, DESQview/X, Quarterdeck Mosaic, Manifest and Partition-It.[4]

On April 18, 1989, Quarterdeck was awarded a US software patent that allowed multiple windowed PC applications under MS-DOS.[5]

After sales and its stock plummeted in 1995, interim CEO King R. Lee hired Gaston Bastiaens as CEO. In order to diversify the company's product offerings, Bastiaens began an ultimately unsuccessful acquisition spree.[6][7][8]

In 1995, the company acquired Landmark Research International Corp. for 3.5 million shares of Quarterdeck (acquiring MagnaRAM and WinProbe)[9] and then Inset Systems, Inc. of Brookfield, Connecticut in September of that year for 933,000 shares of Quarterdeck (acquiring HiJaak graphics software in the deal).[10]

In March 1996, Quarterdeck acquired Datastorm Technologies, Inc., publishers of PROCOMM and PROCOMM PLUS, and relocated its technical support and development operations from California and Florida, to Datastorm's Columbia, Missouri headquarters.[11]

In July 1996, Quarterdeck acquired Vertisoft Systems, publishers of the DoubleDisk and Fix-It utiltities, also for 3.5 million shares of Quarterdeck. [12] Both Landmark and Vertisoft had extensive revenues from direct-marketing of third party products through telemarketing and direct mail.[13]

Bastiaens resigned in August 1996, and Quarterdeck continued under acting Co-CEOs King R. Lee, and Anatoly Tikhman, the former CEO of Vertisoft.[14] The company announced a restructuring and a loss, and in January 1997, Quarterdeck hired Curtis Hessler to run the company. [15][16]

In 1998, with its DOS utilities market all but collapsed, Quarterdeck was acquired for $0.52 per share by Symantec (the Norton Utilities company), which discontinued support of some Quarterdeck products, e.g., Mosaic, and integrated others into larger offerings, e.g., CleanSweep, which became part of Norton SystemWorks.[17]

List of software products[edit]


  1. ^ Board of Trustees - Boston College
  2. ^ Our Team - InfraTab
  3. ^ Larson, Jennifer (1993). "Quarterdeck Is Changing The Office Environment". General Computing 4 (8). 
  4. ^ Divvying up Disks PC Mag, 25. März 1997, S. 66
  5. ^ Patent Is Won By Quarterdeck - NY Times
  6. ^ LA Times Article
  7. ^ SEC
  8. ^ WSJ Article
  9. ^ PR Newswire, June 30, 1995. "Quarterdeck Acquires Landmark Research International"
  10. ^ PR Newswire, September 06, 1995. "Quarterdeck Signs Agreement to Acquire Inset Systems, Inc.; Inset Shipped This Week a Complete Graphic Utilities Solution for Windows 95".
  11. ^ SEC.gov form 8k
  12. ^ SEC form 8K
  13. ^ http://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/707668/0000944209-98-002115.txt SEC form 10k]
  14. ^ SEC.gov company press release
  15. ^ [http://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/707668/0000950148-96-002200.txt SEC.gov form 8k
  16. ^ SEC.gov press release
  17. ^ Symantec Press Release
  18. ^ Quarterdeck Mosaic screen shots
  19. ^ http://alamopc.org/pcalamode/reviews/archive1/rev021.htm Quarterdeck WebAuthor 1.0 (for Word for Windows 6.0)

External links[edit]