The war between Oracle and SAP is about to move beyond enterprise applications to the courtroom.
Oracle said that it has sued SAP “about corporate theft on a grand scale” seeking undisclosed damages. Oracle also argues that the theft formed the basis of SAP’s “Safe Passage” program, which is designed to entice Oracle customers to switch to SAP. SAP won’t comment until it has reviewed the complaint.
“We have just been notified of the lawsuit, and have taken note of the Oracle press release,” said an SAP spokesman. “We are still reviewing the matter, and, until we have a chance to study the allegations, SAP will follow is standard policy of not commenting on pending litigation.”
Apparently, the investor community has been abuzz all this week with the idea that Oracle is about to launch a takeover bid for SAP. The gossip even comes with an offer price: 38.5 euros/share ($49.78). The whispers led to some see-sawing of SAP’s stock price, though it ended the week lower than it started.
The speculation was fueled by SAP’s disappointing financial results earlier this month, though the disappointment was with SAP’s failure to meet its own aggressive plans, not with any fall off in its business. SAP’s license sales are still growing, last year at an 11% clip.
So,We wouldn’t put any credence in the story.
Oracle had to fight hard enough to get its PeopleSoft acquisition past the antitrust division of the U.S. Justice department. A bid for SAP would give the combined entity more than 70% of the worldwide enterprise systems market, depending on how you define it. It wouldn’t fly in U.S. courts, and it certainly wouldn’t be approved in the EU.