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Oracle Corporation (NYSE:ORCL)

F3Q2014 Results Earnings Conference Call

March 18, 2014 5:00 PM ET

Executives

Ken Bond, Vice President of Investor Relations

Larry Ellison - Chief Executive Officer

Safra Catz - President and CFO

Mark Hurd - President

Analysts

Karl Keirstead - Deutsche Bank

Raimo Lenschow - Barclays

Jason Maynard - Wells Fargo

Heather Bellini - Goldman Sachs

Richard Sherlund - Nomura

Phil Winslow - Credit Suisse

Kash Rangan - Merrill Lynch

Brad Zelnick - Macquarie

Brad Reback - Stifel

Operator

Please standby. Good day, everyone. And welcome to today’s Oracle Corporation Third Quarter Fiscal Year 2014 Conference. Today’s call is being recorded.

At this time, I’d like to introduce Ken Bond, Vice President of Investor Relations, Oracle. Please go ahead, sir.

Ken Bond

Thank you, Kelly. Good afternoon, everyone. And welcome to Oracle’s third quarter fiscal year 2014 earnings conference call. A copy of the press release and financial tables, which includes a GAAP to non-GAAP reconciliation and other supplemental financial information can be viewed and downloaded from our Investor Relations website.

On the call today are Chief Executive Officer, Larry Ellison; President and CFO, Safra Catz; and President, Mark Hurd.

As a reminder, today’s discussion will include forward-looking statements, including predictions, expectations, estimates or other information that might be considered forward-looking.

Throughout today’s discussion, we will present some important factors relating to our business, which may potentially affect these forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are also subject to risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from statements made today.

As a result, we caution you against placing undue reliance on these forward-looking statements and we encourage you to review our most recent reports including our 10-Q and 10-K, and any applicable amendments for a complete discussion of these factors and other risks that may affect our future results or the market price of our stock.

And finally, we are not obligating ourselves to revise our results or publicly release any revisions to these forward-looking statements in light of new information or future events.

Before taking questions, we will begin with a few prepared remarks. And with that, I’ll turn the call over to Safra.

Safra Catz

Thanks, Ken. I’m going to focus on our non-GAAP results for Q3. I’ll then review guidance for Q4 and turn the call over to Larry and Mark for their comments. This quarter currency was a 1% headwind to new software license and 2% headwind to hardware and total revenues.

In addition, EPS this year was reduced by $0.02 due to a currency remeasurement non-operating loss for Venezuela that obviously had not been included in my guidance. In Q3 of last year, Venezuela’s devaluation had $0.01 impact.

Q3 for us was a solid quarter and overall, we are pleased with our results. Core businesses were within guidance and areas of investor focus including cloud, engineered systems and hardware, all delivered strong results. My comments today are generally going to reflect constant dollar growth rate unless I mention it otherwise.

Total software revenues were nearly $7 billion, up 6% from last year. Software updates and product support revenues drove nearly half the total company revenue at $4.6 billion, up 7% from last year.

Q3 renewal rates were at a four-year high as our installed base of 400,000 customers continues to power earnings and cash flow. New software license revenues were $2.4 billion up 5%.

Looking at GAAP results by region, the Americas grew 9% with Latin America particularly strong and EMEA grew 3%, Asia-Pacific *though declined with Australia and India both down.

Within software, cloud subscriptions were 292 million up 24% from last year, as our cloud business continues to ramp, bookings growth was again much higher than cloud subscription revenue growth.

We have been using Fusion accounting for our own financial reporting for two years and revenues for all portfolio of Fusion including financials, supply chain, HCM and customer experience grew triple digits.

Now as our cloud business becomes more material, I want to share how cloud subscriptions affect our financials. Most obvious is that revenue is initially lower as subscription license revenue is recognized over the life of the agreement as opposed to license revenue being taken upfront.

Overtime, since we are providing much more than just the software and the updates, the revenue is higher. The additional value we are providing is the hardware, including our engineered systems, the hosting and the expertise that only Oracle can provide, while leveraging the economies of scale that we have. So while customers are paying overtime, they are using and paying for more Oracle products through cloud subscription.

They are paying less than total because they too can benefit from our operating synergies. Net-net, the cloud operating business is attractive for both customers and for Oracle, but especially so given the integration of Oracle hardware, software and expertise.

For software, database continues to do very well with Exadata, Exalytics and Business Intelligence software products all up more than 30%. Also strong with customer experience and/or CRM, both on-premise and SaaS, as well as our communications and project management vertical.

The quarter was not dependent on any one large deal. Hardware system product revenue was $725 million, up 10% from last year. Obviously, we are pleased to have exceeded our guidance, but it’s also nice to report growth.

Engineered systems grew more than 30% and this spectacular growth is reflected not only in our hardware growth but also in a very long list of customer wins we had against IBM. Engineered systems now account for nearly a third of all hardware product sales.

Hardware gross margin was down about 2 points, because we are packing the newest systems with more memory without raising prices. Hardware support was $600 million up 7% from last year, but down sequentially, a normal seasonal pattern.

For the company, total revenue for the quarter was $9.3 billion, up 6% from last year, non-GAAP operating income grew $188 million to $4.4 billion, up 6% over last year and the operating margin was 47% again.

We believe we can invest for growth and make money as we continue to see leverage in our business model. As I mentioned earlier, included in our non-operating expense is a foreign currency remeasurement loss of $110 million related to our Venezuelan subsidiary were not for this loss EPS would have been $0.02 higher.

The non-GAAP tax rate for the quarter was 23%. The non-GAAP EPS was $0.68 in U.S. dollars growing 7% in constant currency. The GAAP tax rate was 21% and GAAP EPS for the quarter was $0.56 in U.S. dollars, up 10% in constant currency.

Free cash flow increased 11% to $14.4 billion over the last four quarters. We now have more than $37 billion in cash and marketable securities. Net of debt our cash position is approximately $13 billion.

As we said before, we are committed to returning value to our shareholders through earnings growth, stock repurchases and a dividend. This quarter we repurchased 55.4 million shares for a total of $2 billion.

Over the last 12 months we have repurchased nearly 360 million shares for a total of $10.7 billion and reducing our -- reduced our share count by 5%. We also paid out more than $1.6 billion in dividends this fiscal year so far.

Stock repurchases and dividends have totaled more than 85% of free cash flow over the last 12 months and the Board of Directors declared a quarterly dividend of $0.12 per share.

Now to the guidance and if currency were to stay where it is today than the impact of currency would be minimal, of course, this could change quickly. New software license and cloud subscription revenue growth is expected to range from zero to 10%. Hardware product revenue growth is expected to range from zero to 10%.

As a result, total revenue growth on both GAAP and non-GAAP basis is expected to range from 3% to 7% in reported dollars. Non-GAAP EPS is expected to be somewhere between $0.92 and $0.99 in constant dollars and in reported dollars. GAAP EPS is expected to be $0.79 to $0.86.

Now I want to remind you the last year we recognized an acquisition-related benefit of $269 million in connection with the Pillar Data Systems earn-out, excluding that benefit GAAP EPS last Q4 would have been $0.74.

This guidance assumes a GAAP tax rate of 21.5% and a non-GAAP tax rate of 23.5%, and of course it may end up being different.

Finally, my guidance does not take into account any additional non-operating remeasurement losses as a result of exchange rate changes in Venezuela.

With that, I’ll turn it over to Larry for his comments.

Larry Ellison

Thank you, Safra. Oracle engineered systems including Exadata, SPARC SuperCluster achieved the 30% constant currency growth rate in the quarter. While throughout the industry traditional high-end server product lines are in steep decline.

Our engineered systems business is growing rapidly for the same fundamental reasons that our cloud applications business is growing rapidly. In both cases, customers want us to integrate the hardware and software, and make it work together so they don’t have to.

As customer shift from to pre-integrated hardware and cloud computing in search of lower cost and more rapid implementation, Oracle was designed with new opportunities the leadership in a number market category.

Five years ago, we delivered our first Exadata Machine, in the next few months, we will deliver our 10,000 engineered system. We believe Oracle’s engineered systems are well on their way to replacing IBM T Series as the leader in high-end computing.

Eight years ago, we started to rewrite all of our applications for the cloud. Now those Fusion, ERP, HCM and CRM cloud applications are competing effectively with SaaS product specialist like Salesforce and Workday.

SAP has not yet begun to rewrite their ERP, HCM and CRM applications for the cloud. This gives the opportunity to become the leader in cloud applications and replace SAP as the leader in the overall applications in the market place.

Strong sales of our cloud applications, engineered systems and 12c Database demonstrate that Oracle is successfully exploiting the transition to the new generation of cloud computing and Big Data. Mark?

Mark Hurd

Sure. Just a couple of comments. Solid results for us in Europe and North America. Latin America was very strong for us while Asia Pacific was mix. Japan had a solid quarter.

In cloud, this was our best quarter ever. Excellent bookings growth, more than 60%. The booking growth more than doubled the revenue growth as we’re just winning in the cloud across all portfolios. Contract sizes are growing more than 65, seven or eight figure deals, with many driven by Fusion HCM and Salesforce.

We are seeing good product from a product cloud offering and Fusion cloud growth was even better with HCM, sales force automation and ERP, all up triple digits. In HCM, we added 250 customers or roughly four to five times the number reported by Workday.

We are seeing excellent growth across all solutions, Core HR, Payroll and Talent Cloud, double-digit growth in Taleo and triple-digit growth in Fusion HCM. In ERP, triple-digit growth for the bigger customer base than Workday and we’re growing faster period.

In customer experience, we had more than 260 new customers with strong growth across all our solutions, marketing, sales, service and social cloud. Our 60% plus cloud booking growth is considerably higher than salesforce.com. Our Fusion products are now in Release 8 with 1,000 new features in that release with improvements.

Coming with release 9 again this summer will be a similar number of new features. So Release 8, 1,000 new features; Release 9 this summer with roughly the same number of features. Along with Responsys and BlueKai soon we continue to gain momentum on the product side, the customer side and you will see this in our financial performance.

In hardware, 10% overall growth, we grew in every single region. We’re growing while our competitors are declining. We are taking share and we created a new category in IM Computing Engineered Systems.

As Larry mentioned, soon we will have sold more than 10,000 engineered systems and our 32% growth rate this quarter is against a meaningful comparison. In fact, Q3 last year was the all time record at that time for system sold.

All later engineered systems products grew double digits. SPARC SuperCluster saw triple-digit growth again this quarter. Both the T-Server and NAS Storage saw good growth and combined with engineered systems, these products now make up nearly two-thirds of all product revenue and grow roughly 20%.

Database continues to show strong performance and we’ve not yet begun to see the coming benefits of 12c which will help drive license growth. Middleware was very strong as well with double-digit growth led by excellent performance in data analytics. Cloud engineered systems are two hyper growth businesses inside the largest cash flow company and enterprise technology.

And with that, we’ll take whatever questions we get.

Ken Bond

Kelly, start the Q&A please.

Question-and-Answer Session

Operator

Thank you. (Operator Instructions) We’ll go first to Karl Keirstead with Deutsche Bank.

Karl Keirstead - Deutsche Bank

Thank you. My question is for Mark. I guess, the stronger momentum in Oracle’s cloud software bookings in revenue growth really jump out of me among the data points in the release. I know you gave some good color by product. Wondering if you might add a little bit more depth to help us understand what the broader drivers were? Was it Oracle doing a better job cross selling on acquisitions? Was it the better functionality in Fusion version 7, maybe any other factors that you think are worth highlighting? Thank you.

Mark Hurd

Yeah, I mean, I think the good news I tell you is that we’re just better at almost every part of this. I mean, I really don’t know how much cloud exist yet. I think we saw renewal a year ago or couple of years ago, we just know lot more now or we’re better at -- we’re better from a product perspective. I talked a little bit about what we’ve got in Release 8. I mean, there is a thousand new features across the entire release.

So big, big jump from a product perspective. We obviously have more feet on the street than we had and certainly not just more feet on the street but they’ve been in place more. They’ve been now trained multiple times and clearly the perception in the market now has improved to better cloud position. I think last quarter, our 35% growth was good news and clearly this 60% growth is even better news.

So I think that will help us as well. But it is broad based, Karl. So there is no one deal in here. There is no one product line that drove it. It’s really across all of our product lines. As I mentioned, our Fusion products are organic. Fusion products really had a fantastic quarter. Fusion HCM, Fusion Sales Automation and Fusion ERP, all three are very strong and it’s really true across most regions as well. I don’t have a regional story that would be leading to growth rate. It was fairly consistent across all regions. I hope that’s helpful.

Karl Keirstead - Deutsche Bank

Okay. Good. Thank you.

Operator

We move next to Raimo Lenschow with Barclays.

Raimo Lenschow - Barclays

Hey, thanks for taking my questions. The area that stood out this quarter was hardware and it’s a bit puzzling. If I look at the IBM numbers, I know they are declining quite significantly. You mentioned some of the drivers there already. Can you just kind of go a little bit deeper in there and also kind of how you see that kind of, we’ve been waiting for turnaround in hardware for while. And now, all the things that you are talking are coming true, is that kind of something sustainable and how do you see that playing out against competition going forward?

Larry Ellison

That’s what is sustainable because engineered systems have been growing rapidly for a long time. We keep talking about it. Now the problem couple of years ago was engineered systems was a small percentage of the total. Now engineered systems has grown up to be over 30% of the total. So it is -- and soon it is going to be half of the total.

So that’s very, very positive. The x86 commodity business which used to be a big business when we bought Sun has now shrunk to almost nothing. So our hardware business has gone through the transition where we got neither the commodity storage business, we got neither the commodity server business and replaced it with computing systems with a lot of our own intellectual property.

These businesses are growing rapidly and have very good margins. The reason we compete with IBM pSeries all the time head-to-head. And it’s not uncommon for our systems to go -- to be several times faster than IBM. Let me give you one example of -- without saying who the competitor was. We replaced a system at the -- in the world largest cloud company, you guys can figure out who that is. World largest cloud computing, we delivered an Exadata System to them.

They moved their application and got in live in three weeks and experienced 10 times better performance at a fraction of the cost. This is not uncommon. When we installed an Exadata Machine or a SPARC SuperCluster to have a very rapid implementation, delivered terrific performance and at a dramatically lower overall cost because all of the complexity of integration is done by us, not by them.

Mark Hurd

I’d add to your comment. You asked if it was sustainable but I hope you’d be encouraged by was, if you looked at your performance over the past several quarters, you’ve seen the reflection of our execution of our strategy and hardware support. You’ve seen hardware support continue to incline year-over-year and sequentially in terms of its performance. We grew now at 7% in Q3, which is a reflection of what Larry described.

The fact that there is higher Oracle IT, directly relates to our attach rates and eventually what turns into hardware support. So, we now have our core businesses that have all been refreshed and that’s why I mentioned it. Our T systems, our Network Attached Storage or ZFS storage and our engineered systems are now almost 70% of our revenue and all three of those are growing and they are gaining share.

So, was it sustainable? Listen, I can’t predict the macro, but I can’t predict we will continue to gain share. And to add to Larry’s point, we just don’t compete with the server vendors. We actually do a lot of other things than just compete with an IBM. We compete with EMC frankly when we get into those environments because we radically change our customer storage requirements.

If our customers got a petabyte of storage, we know how to compress that data with Exadata to where they may or may need to use a 100 terabytes. And so this opportunity for us to now change the game in a way people think about how they use their infrastructure is in my opinion long term a very sustainable strategy and we’ve got differentiation and that’s what we are using.

Raimo Lenschow - Barclays

Perfect. Thank you.

Operator

We’ll hear now from Jason Maynard with Wells Fargo.

Jason Maynard - Wells Fargo

Hey, good afternoon. I had a two parter question for you. The first part is Larry, maybe talk a little bit about 12c and how you think it influences the hardware business next year? I know there is the -- c can stand for cloud but I’d be curios to get your take on the consolidation opportunity?

And then as part of that, Safra made a quick comment about, I think the renewal rates in your largest revenue line around license update and support, I’d love to get a little more color from there and how you are seeing 12c influence maintenance renewals and customers subscribing for support? Thank you.

Larry Ellison

Okay. I’ll start with 12c in terms of its rate of uptake there. There are two key aspects of 12c. One that came out with the initial release which is the multi-tenant feature, that’s why it’s called 12c for the cloud. It literally takes any application that you got, any Oracle application you’ve got and makes it a multi-tenant application. Even companies like salesforce.com where it was a supplier and -- with to salesforce.com and a competitor with salesforce.com.

I just recently got a note from Mark Benioff who is excited about bringing in Exadata and 12c and making in at the basis of salesforce.com’s cloud computing infrastructure that they put our application on. So we are seeing adopters with very, very high standards in terms of having to supply millions of users, reliably and cost effectively in the cloud. Talk about moving their entire business to 12c and Exadata. That’s just the tip of the iceberg of these hyperscale companies.

We think virtually all of our customers are on their way to moving to 12c. Now some -- they are the early adopters and then there is the rest of the guys who come down the road a bit later. But we think it’s very attractive to our conventional customers and to hyperscale customers like Salesforce and others.

The second piece is the in-memory piece and we think that it comes out this summer, comes out this June, basically June, July, August something like that. And we think that’s going to accelerate the adoption of 12c a lot. I think the performance gains there are so dramatic, we think people will -- even the people who like to wait a while for the new features and maybe wait six months or year before they try it out. There are people trying it out now, hundreds of people trying it out now before it’s even released.

So, we think this is a unique feature in terms of being able to have a huge payoff right away and we think 12c will be the most rapidly adopted new release in many, many years for those two reasons, in memory and multi-tenancy features. I will let Safra comment about the renewal rates.

Safra Catz

Well, the renewal rates and database are always extremely strong. Folks make really long-term sets on our database and because we just continue to provide the kind of innovation Larry talking about, they always renew. I mean, it doesn’t make sense not to. They get just so much enormous value. We continue to invest in the database as Larry just mentioned and as a result, renewal rates remain extremely, extremely high for the database for all our products to be frank. But database is always great and it remained again that way this quarter and all year.

Larry Ellison

Next question, please.

Operator

We’ll hear now from Heather Bellini with Goldman Sachs.

Heather Bellini - Goldman Sachs

Thank you and good afternoon. Mark, I was just wondering if you could elaborate a little bit more on the comments you made about Modern Middleware and data analytics, if you could help highlight your strategy for us as well as if you can go over with us your competitive positioning?

Mark Hurd

Sure. Yeah. I mean, I think as I mentioned, Middleware growth was strong underneath it. Data analytics was very, very strong. Our growth in data analytics was -- the tech part of data analytics was greater than 40%, so it’s a big number now. We’ve done several things. One, we’ve seen a couple of shifts. Well, first, we’ve added a lot of sales people. Second, with the addition of our Endeca product line with the addition of Exalytics, we’ve brought a lot of new technology to the space. We’ve also seen the competitors that we compete with shift.

Traditionally, Oracle would see Business Objects and Cognos and we actually see Tableau a lot more than we see those two at this point. And frankly, I think the integration, what we’ve done with Endeca, with Exalytics has paid off. The sales people, we brought paid off and you see it show up in our results. There are other things in Middleware, Heather, that performed very well as well. But of materiality that’s probably the one to call out which is data analytics.

Larry Ellison

If I could just add one thing to that, with the release of Oracle and memory database with 12c, our data analytics performance is going to increase by more than a factor of 10. In some cases, they are that more than a factor of a 100. So, we think this summer with 12c, our data analytics business is going to take off and of course the intention is to sell a lot of those data analytics products in the cloud as opposed to our premise.

We will give customers a choice, but will offer those data analytics in the cloud, data analytics on premise. It’s a big push for us. As Mark said, we see new competitors and an opportunity once again to move to the front of the pack to become the number one data analytics company in the world. We think the new competitors are small and innovative. The old competitors have a lot of market share and we think that market share is there for the taking as long as we can deliver high-quality technology and that’s what we will do this summer.

Mark Hurd

I should have mentioned that too, Larry, you had trigger that thought. We did announce some BI offerings in the cloud in the quarter and so, while not yet a material part of our revenue, an awful exciting offering to add to everything else that I and Larry mentioned in terms of what we bring into the market. So, we’re excited about the space. We think there is opportunities for us to gain material share.

Heather Bellini - Goldman Sachs

Thank you.

Operator

And Rick Sherlund with Nomura has our next question.

Richard Sherlund - Nomura

Thanks. For Larry, can you update us on your progress in delivering your infrastructure stack and the cloud delivered as platform-as-a-service, and are there any metrics you can give us on the traction that you’re seeing there?

Larry Ellison

Yes. Well, it’s available on a limited basis right now. It’s going to be available in both infrastructure-as-a-service and platform-as-a-service is, we’ve done all the pricing, the infrastructure-as-a-service and we priced might pretty much equivalent to Amazon that really we think that a commodity business and not in any way of that in a bad essence. To play that game you will have to be, we are going to have a compute service and a storage service. The storage service is already out. The compute service is going to be released in that shortly and that will be very competitive we think with Amazon or anybody else in this business.

The big differentiator for us is along with infrastructure service we have a very strong platform-as-a-service offering coming out with our infrastructure, and that’s of course our two major platform plays in middleware it’s Java and the database of course is Oracle. We think that gives us a unique pair of differentiators in the infrastructure platform-as-a-service as taken together and we think that’s what our customers are going to do. Customers are going to come to us and buy our platform in the cloud and buy infrastructure in the cloud and move a lot of their existing applications off -- out of their own data centers into our cloud and they can do that without having to change their applications at all.

So they can move their applications intact to our cloud and get all of the cloud’s benefits, all of the efficiencies of scale, and they don’t have to change their apps at all. We think that’s a unique proposition we offer our customers. And again delivery time is all this summer.

Ken Bond

Next question please?

Operator

That will be from Phil Winslow with Credit Suisse.

Phil Winslow - Credit Suisse

Hi. Thanks, guys. Just want to build on that last question on the cloud. At OpenWorld you guys talked about some metrics in terms of fusion applications in the cloud and the percentage of customers that are choosing your cloud-based deployment Fusion. I’m wondering if you can comment on just what you have been saying over the past few quarters there. And then also just competitively with Fusion in the cloud, what are you seeing out there versus Workday, versus salesforce.com and now that Fusion apps and Fusion apps in the cloud have been out there for obviously multiple quarters?

Mark Hurd

Well, I’ll take that. I think what you asked was the deployment of Fusion on premise versus cloud, I think that’s what you asked and it’s cloud, cloud, cloud. So let me say that one more time cloud, cloud, cloud, it’s generally where Fusion is deployed. So we’ve had great success with it. It was a great adoption. And I think one of the things that’s important, I have seen some opinions. I won’t credit a source that our growth rates, these exciting growth rates we’re describing, they are coming from acquired properties as opposed to Fusion activities. And I want to make sure I am clear Phil to refute that.

Now it doesn’t mean I loved acquire properties too so I’d love more, but I just want to make sure it’s clear in the numbers that our Fusion products are growing very fast, faster than our overall growth rate. Now as it relate to your conversation about Workday, I tried to be as transparent as I could be, I got -- we’ve got the good fortune that they are transparent in most case, although I didn’t get to see their customer list this quarter. In previous quarters, I hear their numbers and we’ve just more new customers than they do.

So it seems like a good metric to me and we will continue to see as we move going forward, but we are very comfortable competing with them. We felt very good about Release 7. As I told you we are now on Release 8. We are very comfortable with that product. We’ve gotten our sales organization trained and we’re very comfortable competing with them and of course we are growing of a bigger base.

With Salesforce, we do all what Larry described. We compete with them. They are a customer at the same time, but in sales automation, we are competing with them. We had very strong growth in Fusion sales auto in the quarter and we are very comfortable with also our position in service cloud. Now that’s right now acquired product, but we feel very good about both, but we’ve added now also the capability of marketing.

So we bought a B2B marketing, a leading marketing automation company, B2B, in Alaqua. We supplemented that with a leading B2C company in responses and we’ve now announced our intention to acquire Blue Coat. So we believe we have a leadership position in marketing automation, leadership position in service automation. We are on the attack in sales automation, although clearly number two to Salesforce at that point, but we believe the ecosystem we have now laid out is second to no one and the leading in the marketplace and I think it’s shown up in our results.

Phil Winslow - Credit Suisse

Great. Thanks, guys.

Ken Bond

Next question please?

Operator

And that will be from Kash Rangan with Merrill Lynch.

Kash Rangan - Merrill Lynch

Hi. Thank you very much. First, Mark, any *tweaks -- what are the things that are working successfully from a sales execution go-to-market standpoint that you plan on emphasizing as you look at your business next year? And one for you Safra, deferred revenue is down sequentially, can you expand upon what might have contributed to that? Thank you very much.

Mark Hurd

I will start and let Saf finish. I mean we’ve obviously added a lot of capacity. We feel very good about the capacity we’ve added. We are very focused on those people being very productive. So what you see us investing a lot now, it’s training. I probably mentioned training three times during this call. And so as our product set continues to get, just continues to get better and better and better and our sales people now have more time in seat, training is a big deal.

Now we will add people next year as Larry talked about some exciting stuff we now have in platform and infrastructure, so you will see us add sales people and as we start to compete with again a new competitor as it relates to platform and infrastructure. You will see us do some supplemental adding in some other places with a real keen focus, Kash on productivity and making these people because you can imagine towards -- against the size of our Salesforce, we have billions of dollars of revenue associated with the productivity gains we can make with the capacity we now have in this company from a sales perspective.

Larry Ellison

If I can add one thing, I mean just to scale it, as we roll out platform-as-a-service and infrastructure-as-a-service, we will have specialist selling nothing but platform-as-a-service and nothing but infrastructure-as-a-service and we will have some place between 500 and 1000 of them that we are going to add next fiscal year starting with the class. This is around the world. So again, we go back to this thing that we *have added a new set of competitors and we need specialist sales teams that are used to competing with Amazon, other specialist sales team that are used to competing with IBM pSeries. It’s a different sales, with different customer quite often. So we have, but we are lining up against all of our new competitors and making sure we have sales capacity as well as a competitive product.

Safra Catz

Okay. Kash, the Q3 deferred revenues are following the exact same seasonal pattern that they always follow, including last year. So though they are sequentially down, that’s really because Q4 is the peak for support renewals etcetera and it always goes down from Q2 to Q3 sequentially. I do want to remind you of course that it’s up over 200 million over the same quarter last year and that’s really what you should be looking at. There is nothing going on as far as burning *down or whatever, it’s simply the same thing we have every Q3 where it’s just -- as it burns down the big Q4 renewals and it shows up right there in that line. That’s it.

Ken Bond

Next question please?

Operator

That will come from Macquarie’s Brad Zelnick.

Brad Zelnick - Macquarie

Thank you very much. Larry, Big Data is obviously a huge opportunity for Oracle given your strength in database and traction with engineered systems. But from an apps perspective, can you talk about the opportunity to differentiate and drive growth by leveraging Big Data within the apps themselves. And do you see Big Data is more of its own category or a feature of next-generation applications?

Larry Ellison

I think it’s another line category. For example, there is no doubt that in-memory databases allow us to analyze large amount of data more quickly. The fact that our Exadata Machines have multiple periods of cashing, we now not only have DRAM and rotating storage, we have a lot of flash memory that we have to manage. It allows us to manage huge databases, multi-petabyte databases and deliver very high performance.

So now we think that Big Data is an underlying set of technologies. For batch, if you want a Big Data batch process, the open source product Hadoop is a very good product, if you’re doing batch processing. If you’re doing Big Data real-time processing *then we think the Oracle databases by far and away the best managed -- best technology for managing real-time processing of Big Data.

We think this is a category where we’re already the leader and in fact, we’re gaining on our competitors. If you look at all of our database competitors, both relational and non-relational databases, we’re taking share both of -- on the SQL area and we’re growing a lot faster than in those SQL area. So we’re very comfortable that the improvements we have made to our database will allow us to prosper in the Big Data era. But again we think of it -- and its worth any application than written on top of Oracle can exploit that data and that application becomes enriched.

So our telecommunications billing systems which has to manage huge amount of transactions with millions and millions of customers, be able to figure out whether to cut-off a phone call when someone exceeds their bill and do all of that real-time. That’s real-time processing of huge amounts of data by a phone company those are the kind of applications we provide that almost no one else can provide.

Brad Zelnick - Macquarie

Thank you.

Operator

And our final question today will be from Brad Reback with Stifel.

Brad Reback - Stifel

Great. Thanks very much. Safra year-to-date CapEx spending is down about 9%, I know in the past you’ve certainly adamant about not *needing to really ramp up CapEx like a lot of your competitors had. But given the really strong 60% bookings growth in cloud has any of the thinking changed there?

Safra Catz

Remember, we have enormous scale that we have not fully *tapped. We have been making investments this whole time and so there will be -- we will continue to invest as we do now. We have obviously some visibility into our contract that we’ve signed but we have so much scale that we’ve been investing in for years much of it still available.

And so we’re very comfortable where we’re at right now and we budgeted to it and I don’t think you’ll be seeing any massive gapping just because our size is so large and because we have our own hardware, we have our own systems, we can really thoroughly optimize for our applications with compression and all these other things that other folks just don’t have the benefit and luxury that we have.

Larry Ellison

We think with our engineered systems and our data compression technology, we can deliver the same storage and the same compute capacity of our competitors for a lot less money. I mean, that’s what we’re selling -- we’re selling this technology to our customers, that’s our pitch. And we think we can build our own data centers just as efficiently and that’s why, I don’t think you’ll ever see our CapEx approach our infrastructure competitors in the cloud.

Safra Catz

Yes.

Brad Reback - Stifel

Thanks very much.

Ken Bond

Thank you. A telephonic replay of this conference call will be available for 24 hours. Dial-in information can be reached in the press release issued earlier today. Please call the Investor Relations department with any follow-up questions from this call and we look forward to speaking with you. Thank you for joining us today and with that, I’ll turn the call back to the Operator for closing.

Operator

Again, that will conclude today’s conference. We thank you all for joining us.

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