Oracle splashes out on drug trial software maker

Oracle has announced plans to buy Phase Forward, which develops software for drug manufacturers, for about $685 million. The deal is expected to close mid-year.

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Oracle has announced plans to buy Phase Forward, which develops software for drug manufacturers, for about $685 million. The deal is expected to close mid-year.

Phase Forward's SaaS (software as a service) products guide the entire drug-development process, from clinical trials to monitoring after they receive regulatory approval, according to a statement. Its employees will be folded into Oracle's Health Sciences global business unit.

The acquisition is just the latest in a long string by Oracle in recent years, but also one of the larger ones in recent history. It ties into the vendor's desire to mine new business from vertical markets like health care.

More details are available on Oracle's website.

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