Oracle's BEA Acquisition Makes Things Interesting

If you've been following the BEA/Oracle saga over the last few months, Wednesday's announcement that Oracle finally bought BEA probably wasn't surprising.

George Dearing, Contributor

January 17, 2008

1 Min Read

If you've been following the BEA/Oracle saga over the last few months, Wednesday's announcement that Oracle finally bought BEA probably wasn't surprising.The deal came in at $8.5 billion, which values the company at just over $19 a share. Not bad, but let's take a look at the ripples the BEA/Oracle combo could cause throughout the enterprise software sector.

For starters, look at the the client roster Oracle will soon have in its crosshairs. Granted there's some overlap, but if Oracle can convince even a small percentage of BEA customers to standardize on Oracle, that's significant. Part of BEA's challenge always has been overcoming the 'middleware' image. Even 'think liquid' did little to combat the company's legacy of application servers and transaction processing. Oracle's sales and marketing horsepower will change that, extending BEA's toolsets and SOA services to the front office instead of just the back office.

As some of the analysts have noted, Oracle's Fusion Middleware also will get a needed jump-start from BEA's SOA infrastructure. In the short term, it won't matter whether the two companies' products are integrated. BEA's SOA and Process Management capabilities will give some polish and direction to Oracle's Fusion project, often criticized for lack of execution and vision since its inception in 2005.

And I wonder what IBM and SAP are thinking? Big Blue probably has shrinking WebSphere sales on its mind, while SAP is likely pitching NetWeaver to anyone who'll listen.

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