Dec. 18, 2013, 12:10 AM
Dec. 18, 2013, 12:02 AM
- Ahead of Oracle's (ORCL) FQ2 report (due after Wednesday's close), JMP's Pat Walravens reports the enterprise software giant is set to carry out a U.S. sales force reorg, and may restructure its struggling hardware ops.
- Walravens also expects Oracle to announce H-P is renewing its Oracle software licenses for $150M. H-P and Oracle haven't been on the best of terms lately.
- Back in July, Walravens reported many tenured Oracle sales personnel had left, and BI reported of frustration within Oracle's salesforce about hardware quotas. In response to the reports, some SA commenters claiming to be ex-Oracle employees aired complaints about the company. Shortly afterwards, senior North American sales exec Anthony Fernicola left for Salesforce.
- Oracle is coming off three straight quarters of revenue misses, and concerns about both its software license and hardware sales have mounted amid growing cloud software competition and server share loss. Oracle has guided for FQ2 license/cloud subscription revenue growth of -6% to +4% Y/Y, and hardware product growth of -11% to -1%.
- With shares having missed out on this year's big tech rally, some bad news is priced in.
Dec. 17, 2013, 5:35 PM
Dec. 12, 2013, 4:13 PM
- Beauty products giant Avon (AVP -1.3%) expects to take a $100M-$125M charge related to the failed rollout of an SAP-based (SAP -0.6%) order management software system. The WSJ states the system was "so burdensome and disruptive to Avon representatives' daily routine that they left in meaningful numbers."
- As Steve Rosenbush notes, Avon's decision, and the employee backlash that triggered it, shines a light on how corporate workers are increasingly demanding the business apps they use be as intuitive and user-friendly as the consumer apps they rely upon.
- This trend, which ties into the "consumerization" of IT, poses a challenge to traditional enterprise software giants such as SAP, Oracle (ORCL), and IBM, and often works to the benefit of enterprise cloud software providers whose offerings emphasize ease-of-use and flexibility over the richest possible feature set.
Dec. 12, 2013, 7:17 AM
Dec. 6, 2013, 6:41 PM
- IDC estimates server sales fell 3.7% Y/Y in Q3. That's a modest improvement from Q2's estimated 6.2% drop, but hardly a figure that will bring cheer to industry players. Gartner estimates revenue fell 2.1% in Q3 vs. 3.8% in Q2.
- The embrace by Web/cloud giants of home-grown servers produced by Asian contract manufacturers (ODMs) continues to upend the industry. IDC thinks sales of such servers rose 45% Y/Y, and now make up 6.5% of industry revenue. It estimates nearly 4/5 of these sales came from the U.S., largely from Google, Facebook, Amazon, and Rackspace.
- #1 H-P (HPQ), which recently reported encouraing enterprise hardware numbers, is assigned a 28.1% share (+150 bps Y/Y) by IDC. #2 IBM, whose total Q3 hardware sales fell 17% Y/Y, is given a 23.4% share (-430 bps).
- Newly-private Dell had a 16.2% share (-40 bps, a reversal from recent gains), Cisco (CSCO - still seeing strong UCS server demand) a 5% share (+170 bps), and Oracle (ORCL - hurt by SPARC/UNIX server weakness) a 4.1% share (-60 bps).
- In a positive for Intel (INTC), x86 servers took share once again, with sales rising 2.8% and making up 79% of industry revenue. Red Hat (RHT) is likely pleased to see Linux servers now make up 28% of industry revenue. Windows (MSFT) servers made up 50%, and UNIX servers just 11%.
- H-P is the leader in the x86 server market (32.3% share), as well as in the growing blade server (43.6%) and density-optimized server (30.7%) markets. There's a decent amount of overlap between the x86 and blade/density-optimized markets.
Nov. 18, 2013, 5:37 PM
- Oracle (ORCL) has acquired Bitzer Mobile, a developer of software tools that enable secure access to corporate apps/files on mobile devices by creating "lockers" within the devices that are shut off from other apps/files. Terms are undisclosed.
- Oracle asserts Bitzer's software will help it address the burgeoning bring-your-own-device (BYOD) trend. Rival VMware offers something similar through its Horizon Mobile Secure Workspace, and Samsung is looking to add secure app/file silos within its devices through its KNOX platform.
- Oracle's purchase comes shortly after IBM bought Fiberlink, a provider of mobile device management, app management, and security software.
Nov. 14, 2013, 10:13 AM
- The list of enterprise hardware/software, telecom equipment, and component/chip suppliers selling off (previous) due to Cisco's poor guidance and order data now includes Oracle (ORCL -2.4%), EZchip (EZCH -6.1%), Riverbed (RVBD -6%, shot higher yesterday on M&A hopes), NeoPhotonics (NPTN -6.6%), Ixia (XXIA -4.7%), Oclaro (OCLR -4%), Procera (PKT -2.3%), and Alliance Fiber (AFOP -3.8%).
- Cisco's weak service provider (-13% Y/Y) and emerging markets (-12%) orders are worrying investors in peers/suppliers, particularly given some peers (I, II) have also reported of soft carrier and/or EM demand. John Chambers' admission the NSA spying scandal has affected sales in China (orders -18%) also isn't going over well.
- However, many on the sell-side argue a big portion of Cisco's problems are tied to company-specific product issues.
- H-P (HPQ -5.6%), which has plenty of Chinese exposure, has added considerably to yesterday's AH losses, and so have Ciena (CIEN -5.3%) and Finisar (FNSR -10%). H-P's FQ4 report is due on Nov. 26, and Ciena's FQ4 report arrives on Dec. 12.
Oct. 31, 2013, 2:04 PM
- In a non-binding vote, Oracle (ORCL +0.5%) shareholders voted against proposed exec. compensation at the software giant's annual meeting. 2B+ votes were cast in opposition, and 1B+ were cast in favor.
- Complaints about Oracle's executive pay have been growing; advisory firm ISS recently recommended shareholders vote against 8 of the company's 11 directors, citing poor oversight with regards to compensation and other matters. Larry Ellison's pay (above $60M each of the last six fiscal year) has especially drawn a lot of heat.
- Nonetheless, a majority of votes were cast in support of Oracle's directors, including those on the compensation committee, in a separate non-binding vote.
Oct. 24, 2013, 10:55 AM
- A source close to Oracle (ORCL) tells BI the company paid "hundreds of millions" for cloud sales configure price quote (CPQ) software vendor BigMachines at a valuation of ~5x sales. With BigMachines reportedly set to produce 2013 sales of $100M (up from 2012's $58M), the price tag could be in the $400M-$500M range.
- BI observes half of BigMachines' customers are also customers of Oracle CRM software archrival Salesforce (CRM +1.9%), and that the startup's client base include major enterprises such as GE and H-P. Oracle already offers an on-premise CPQ solution, but (as with other CRM markets) demand is shifting towards cloud-based offerings.
- Salesforce invested in BigMachines last year, and more recently took a stake in rival cloud CPQ vendor Apttus. Much as it responded to Oracle-Eloqua by acquiring ExactTarget, Salesforce could turn its sights on buying Apttus or another BigMachines rival.
Oct. 23, 2013, 12:09 PM
- Oracle (ORCL -1.3%) has acquired BigMachines, a developer of cloud-based software that automates the creation of complex price quotes for sales teams. Terms are undisclosed. (PR)
- BigMachines' software complements Oracle's existing cloud CRM software offerings, and represents an attempt to better compete against Salesforce (CRM -1.7%), whose mainstay Sales Cloud sales force automation platform has been rapidly taking share from Oracle (and SAP's) on-premise CRM apps.
- The purchase comes shortly after Oracle bought cloud content marketing software vendor Compendium. The purchase was the latest in a string of cloud marketing-related acquisitions by Oracle, which is competing in this space with Salesforce's Marketing Cloud, as well as offerings from SAP, Adobe, and IBM.
- Previous: Salesforce rises, Oracle falls in enterprise app survey
Oct. 22, 2013, 4:29 AM| 2 Comments
Oct. 17, 2013, 12:57 PM
- Oracle (ORCL -0.2%) has acquired Compendium, a developer of cloud-based tools for targeting, publishing, promoting, and monitoring marketing-themed content (blog posts, Facebook/Twitter updates, videos, etc.) for online/mobile platforms. Terms are undisclosed. (PR)
- Compendium's products, which leverage customer data/profiles to target content, will be integrated with recently-acquired Eloqua's cloud-based marketing automation platform for online campaigns.
- The Compendium and Eloqua acquisitions have followed the purchase of three social media marketing startups - Involver, Collective Intellect, and Vitrue. Oracle, Salesforce, SAP, and IBM have all been using M&A to help create end-to-end marketing software platforms aimed at CMOs, who are accounting for a growing share of IT spend.
Oct. 15, 2013, 5:05 PM
- Proxy advisory firm ISS recommends Oracle (ORCL -1.6%) investors vote against 8 of the company's 11 board members at its Oct. 31 annual meeting, arguing the board has failed to "provide effective oversight of management on behalf of shareholders" with regards to executive compensation and other matters.
- Larry Ellison ($41B estimated net worth) has already been drawing heat from shareholders over his steep pay. Ellison's compensation totaled $76.9M in FY13, and has steadily been above $60M over the last six fiscal years (it topped $80M in three of those years). Major shareholders Vanguard and CtW Investment are among the disgruntled parties.
Oct. 4, 2013, 7:34 PM
- Reuters reports Avaya, a top provider of telecom hardware/software for enterprises and contact centers, held buyout talks with Oracle (ORCL) earlier this year. However, the talks are said to have "fizzled" in recent months.
- Avaya was taken private by P-E firms TPG and Silver Lake for $8.4B in '07. The company has been struggling to deal with market saturation, competition from the likes of Cisco and Microsoft, and an industry shift towards hosted/cloud-based telecom services (RingCentral's IPO drives home the strength of that trend).
- Avaya's sales fell 7% Y/Y to $5.17B in FY12, and 8% to $1.15B in its most recent quarter. Thanks to its P-E owners, Avaya had $6.1B in debt at the end of March '13, and just $303M in cash. The company filed for an IPO back in 2011, but its plans have been on hold ever since.
- Buying Avaya would dramatically expand Oracle's enterprise hardware ops, which are contending with revenue declines of their own.
Oct. 4, 2013, 4:31 AM
- Oracle (ORCL) CEO Larry Ellison will forgo a potential payout of $500M in order to settle accusations of conflicts of interest in the company's 2011 purchase of Pillar Data Systems, a data-storage firm that Ellison controlled.
- Oracle originally agreed to pay for the acquisition based on Pillar's performance through 2014 but none up front. Ellison was to receive the first $562M of any payment connected to the deal, but he will now return 95% of any money he gets back to Oracle.
- The settlement comes after lawsuits from two shareholders, and amid criticism over Ellison's large salary.
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Oracle Corporation develops, manufactures, markets, hosts and supports database and middleware software, application software, cloud infrastructure, hardware system including computer server, storage and networking products and related services.
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