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7/17/2009
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Sun Shareholders Approve Merger With Oracle

The deal is still being scrutinized by federal regulators, however, and the hold-up is how Oracle licenses the rights to Java.

By a margin of 3 to 2, or 62 percent, at a special meeting at Sun Microsystems' headquarters in Santa Clara Thursday, Sun shareholders gave the Oracle merger a green light .

Pending approval by the Justice Department, database titan Oracle is set to acquire Sun for $9.50 per share in cash, or $5.6 billion including Sun's cash and debt.

Neither Sun Chairman Scott McNealy or Sun CEO Jonathan Schwartz attended the meeting and the vote was over in minutes, putting an end to a 27-year-old company whose influence on Silicon Valley and the technology industry has been profound.

Oracle CEO Larry Ellison has called Sun's Java programming language "the single most important software asset we have ever acquired."

The deal is still being scrutinized by federal regulators, however, and the hold-up is how Oracle licenses the rights to Java, according to a statement issued by Oracle on June 26. [http://www.oracle.com/us/corporate/press/020174]

One analyst, AMR Research, warned this month that Oracle's acquisition of Java could "wreak havoc" in the enterprise software market because so many software vendors rely on Java for their applications.

AMR said that 33 of the top 50 software vendors depend on Java, and many of them are Oracle competitors. Oracle, along with SAP, dominates most of the enterprise software market, according to AMR.

Oracle hasn't issued a statement on the shareholder vote, but said in June that the deal would still close this summer despite the Justice Department's investigation.

Sun rival Hewlett-Packard is also preparing for the deal to close. HP on Thursday announced a "Sun Complete Care" program designed to lure Sun customers to switch to HP.


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