Oracle Corp. has sued rival SAP AG for "corporate theft on a grand scale," accusing it of stealing copyrighted software through unauthorized use of customer access codes. SAP has allegedly used stolen copies of thousands of Oracle products and confidential materials to compile an illegal library of Oracle's proprietary code. SAP has not yet commented on the charges. Oracle has spent $20 billion over the past three years acquiring software companies that it hopes will enable it to move past its core database business and onto SAP's corporate applications turf. SAP is the world leader in accounting, human resources and inventory management solutions. Oracle's lawsuit charges that a "storehouse of stolen Oracle intellectual property" has enabled SAP to doubly undercut Oracle, both by supplying Oracle's customers with support services at cheap rates and by luring them toward SAP products. The illegal downloads of Oracle software allegedly originated from a Texas Internet address registered to TomorrowNow, a wholly owned subsidiary of SAP.
Sources: Wall Street Journal, Reuters, Information Week, New York Times
Commentary: Oracle Sues SAP For 'Corporate Theft On A Grand Scale' • Oracle Sues SAP: Below the Belt With a 2x4
Stocks/ETFs to watch: Oracle Corp. (ORCL), SAP AG [ADR] (SAP). Competitors: Microsoft Corp. (MSFT), International Business Machines Corp. (IBM). ETFs: Software HOLDRs (SWH), Vanguard Information Technology ETF (VGT), iShares MSCI Germany Index (EWG)
Conference call transcripts: Oracle F3Q07 (Qtr End 2/28/07)
Related: The lawsuit [Wall Street Journal]
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