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Thursday, May 04, 2006

Oracle & The Ascending Power Of The Enterprise Software Buyers

The enterprise software buyers look to be asserting themselves a lot these days – particularly the set of buyers using a myriad number of oracle’s enterprise applications. Oracle App’s roadmap seems to be full of never ending bends & twists. Niel reports after attending the Collaborate 06 conference which brought together three different Oracle Users Groups: Quest Direct (traditionally the JD Edwards users group but now extends to include PeopleSoft), IOUG (Independent Oracle Users Group) and OAUG (Oracle Applications Users Group) that the new approach seems to be one centered around the theme - "Protect, Extend, Evolve". This actually signals a pretty dramatic shift in strategy for Oracle with regard to its installed customer base of PeopleSoft and JD Edwards. The wait and watch attitude of oracle customers seem to be paying off – given the concerns of very high potential cost to migration to Fusion, Oracle seems to be coming around to the point of supporting these applications as these remain and are making some announcements of new releases around these products. Neil points to a few announcements in this direction in respect of Peoplesoft & JDE.

As I see it, people in the industry know very well that in respect of other point acquisitions, Oracle’s focus is just to rename the products as oracle xm1, xmII etc.We are also seeing for the first time in recent years the return of power to enterprise software customers as this case exemplifies – any upgrade/switch happen on customer terms. As I wrote earlier, Oracle has a huge integration challenge ahead but had promised its worried customer base to provide long-term support for new and existing versions of its applications. While oracle is moving fast to potentially
own the application stack and trying to redefine the expectations on software companies, the enterprise software buyers seem to be having the last laugh – even traditional license frameworks look susceptible for change.
Interestingly whats the price for acquiring marketshare in enterprise market - I % share is 1 Billion USD!! Anyway wishing the New-New Oracle all the best and hope that its depressed stock prices get a filip. Clearly enterprise software buyers and users have to thank oracle - for helping them relaise their power - for a different set of reasons than what Oracle would have originally envisioned.

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