You’ve got to hand it to Oracle. They don’t mind who they slap. Whether Oracle's customers like their aggressive attitude to rival suppliers though remains to be seen.
Next week’s Oracle Openworld will be one place to find out. No doubt a statement yesterday from Oracle will be one of the talking points, alongside the proclamations about Fusion apps.
It was back in 2006 that Oracle proclaimed it was “halfway to Fusion,” so it will be interesting to see if it is really there this time.
That though is next week. The unprecedented attack on Mike Lynch is of more immediate interest. Oracle states:
So much for the scene-setting. Oracle continues:
After listening to Mr Lynch’s PowerPoint slide sales pitch to sell Autonomy to Oracle, Mr Kehring and Mr Hurd told Mr Lynch that with a current market value of $6 billion, Autonomy was already extremely over-priced. The Lynch shopping visit to Oracle is easy to verify. We still have his PowerPoint slides.”
This statement has been dismissed by some on Twitter as “handbags at dawn”. It is more serious than that.
Firstly, it raises issues about corporate valuations and about what the money customers pay suppliers is spent on - product development or over-valued acquisitions.
Secondly, it raises issues of corporate governance and transparency. The Financial Times this morning had an interesting comment on governance in Silicon Valley. HP is a mess and Oracle is stirring up trouble, Yahoo is a mess, Cisco is a mess, the article states.
All this matters to CIOs, to IT directors and to their staff. Competition brings innovation. Poor corporate governance and overweening egos damage companies and their customers.