Channel Marker

Oct 27 2010   11:39AM GMT

Ellison warns HP/Apotheker



Posted by: badarrow
Tags:
Barbara Darrow
Hewlett-Packard
HP
IT channel products and technologies
Larry Ellison
Leo Apotheker
Oracle
Ray Lane
SAP

Here’s one of the weirder statements (attributable to Oracle CEO Larry Ellison) to hit reporters’ mailboxes in recent decades:

“A few weeks ago I accused HP’s new CEO, Leo Apotheker, of overseeing an industrial espionage scheme centering on the repeated theft of massive amounts Oracle’s software. A major portion of this theft occurred while Mr. Apotheker was CEO of SAP. HP’s Chairman, Ray Lane, immediately came to Mr. Apotheker defense by writing a letter stating, ‘Oracle has been litigating this case for years and has never offered any evidence that Mr. Apotheker was involved.’ Well, that’s what we are planning to do during the trial that starts next Monday.

Unless, Mr. Lane and the rest of the HP Board of Directors decide to keep their new CEO far, far away from HP Headquarters until that trial is over. If HP keeps Leo Apotheker far from HP headquarters we cannot subpoena him to testify at that trial.

I don’t think Ray Lane wants to risk Leo Apotheker testifying under oath as to why he allowed the theft of Oracle’s property to continue for 8 months after he was made sole CEO of SAP. I hope I’m wrong, but my guess is that new HP’s Chairman, Mr. Lane, will keep HP’s new CEO, Mr. Apotheker, far, far away from the Courthouse until this trial is over.”

Some background: Oracle sued SAP three years ago, alleging that a subsidiary (TomorrowNow) engaged in wide-spread trade secret theft–using customers’ access to Oracle upgrades and documentation to download proprietary Oracle information.

Now all of that is playing out in what looks to be a battle royale between Oracle and HP. In August, HP canned its CEO Mark Hurd. Oracle quickly hired him as co-president. HP, then sued Hurd because the new Oracle, with its Sun franchise, is a hardware rival to HP. That suit went away, but then HP hired Leo Apotheker, ex-CEO of Oracle arch-enemy SAP,  as its Hurd replacement. And  it brought on a respected former Oracle board member Ray Lane as chairman of the board. That executive suite move made HP seem a tad, um, obsessed  with Oracle.

And the obsession appears to be reciprocated. Ellison’s PR team sent out the statement late on October 26–Apotheker doesn’t officially join HP until November 1.

Let us know what you think about the story; email Barbara Darrow, Senior News Director at bdarrow@techtarget.com, or follow us on twitter.

Check out more IT channel news on SearchITChannel.com.

 Comment on this Post

 
There was an error processing your information. Please try again later.
Thanks. We'll let you know when a new response is added.
Send me notifications when other members comment.

REGISTER or login:

Forgot Password?
By submitting you agree to receive email from TechTarget and its partners. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. Privacy

Forgot Password

No problem! Submit your e-mail address below. We'll send you an e-mail containing your password.

Your password has been sent to: