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3/19/2009
08:22 AM
Bob Evans
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Oracle CEO Ellison: We'll Keep Taking Market Share

Oracle will "continue to take market share from [SAP] for years to come," has produced a better database machine than Teradata, and is taking database share from both Microsoft and IBM -- all because of the $3 billion Oracle invests each year in R&D, CEO Larry Ellison said yesterday.

Oracle will "continue to take market share from [SAP] for years to come," has produced a better database machine than Teradata, and is taking database share from both Microsoft and IBM -- all because of the $3 billion Oracle invests each year in R&D, CEO Larry Ellison said yesterday.As noted in a news story yesterday by InformationWeek's Mary Hayes, Ellison said in a conference call with financial analysts that Oracle's commitment to cloud computing is more vigorous than SAP's, and that Oracle has simply made investments in new-product development that SAP has not matched.

In making those points yesterday (link good through March 25), Ellison's references to Oracle's commitment to cloud computing did not include the dismissive type of language he's used in the past when referring to SaaS or cloud-based products. In a conference call with analysts three months ago, he mentioned those terms and then added "or whatever you want to call them." So while the $3 billion annual investment is by far the most-credible commitment the company is making, Ellison's language also offers a strong indication that he has given his full blessing for SaaS and the cloud to move well within the mainstream at Oracle.

In another departure in tone and substance from comments he made three months ago to analysts, Ellison yesterday spoke again with enormous enthusiasm about the company's new Exadata Database Server (aka HP Oracle Database Machine) but, unlike last time when he made no mention of competitors' products, this time he spoke directly to how the new Oracle product was superior to Teradata's and has been outperforming it in customer trials.

Describing the Oracle Database Machine as "the most exciting new product we've had in many, many years," he said one customer had experienced a performance increase of 28X compared with an existing Oracle database, while another customer saw monthly aggregation drop from 4-1/2 hours to 3 minutes. And then he went very specifically after Teradata.

"When compared to Teradata, a competitive database machine that's been in the market for a very, very long time, another customer saw that we were six times faster than their existing Teradata application when using Exadata versus Teradata," Ellison said.

Citing customer interest in the Exadata product, Oracle co-president Charles Phillips said "the pipeline is the largest build I've ever seen in terms of a new product." He noted that a major European retailer testing Exadata "reduced batch processing from 8 hours to 30 minutes [and] did not believe the process had been completed."

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