Not quite analogous, as Jim Clark always planned to make the bulk of Netscape's revenue off their server products. The exact quote was something like, I'm selling printing presses but first I need to teach people to read.
Back then Netscape Enterprise Server did a bunch of stuff that Apache didn't (threads, API, certs, etc). Most people were using forking and CGI scripts, but we were saving a ton of money on colo that easily paid for the license by using NSAPI instead of Perl. Even now, over a decade later, I maintain that NES 2.01 was possibly the best web server ever written. If I could use it today, I would.
What really killed Netscape was that the only thing less reliable than NES 3 was the watchdog process they included with it to restart it when it crashed! That was around the time that Apache was catching up, and the rest is history.