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Oracle Corporation

Oracle Corporation

Oracle Corporation is an American multinational computer technology corporation headquartered in Redwood Shores, California. The company sells database software and technology, cloud engineered systems, and enterprise software products—particularly its own brands of database management systems. In 2018, Oracle was the third-largest software company by revenue.

The company also develops and builds tools for database development and systems of middle-tier software, enterprise resource planning (ERP) software, Human Capital Management (HCM) software, customer relationship management (CRM) software, and supply chain management (SCM) software.

Oracle Corporation
Oracle Logo.svg
Headquarters in Redwood Shores, California
Traded as
  • NYSE: ORCL [162]
  • S&P 100 Component
  • S&P 500 Component
ISINUS68389X1054 [163]
FoundedJune 16, 1977 (1977-06-16)
Santa Clara, California, U.S.[1]
Redwood Shores, California
United States
Area served
Key people
  • Oracle Applications
  • Oracle Database
  • Oracle Cloud
  • Enterprise Manager
  • Fusion Middleware
  • Servers
  • Workstations
  • Storage
  • (See Oracle products)
RevenueIncreaseUS$39.83 billion(2018)[4]
Operating income
IncreaseUS$13.67 billion(2018)[4]
Net income
DecreaseUS$3.82 billion(2018)[4]
Total assetsIncreaseUS$137.26 billion(2018)[4]
Total equityDecreaseUS$45.72 billion(2018)[4]
Number of employees
137,000 (2018)[5]
SubsidiariesList of Oracle subsidiaries
Websitewww.oracle.com/index.html [164]


Larry Ellison co-founded Oracle Corporation in 1977 with Bob Miner and Ed Oates under the name Software Development Laboratories (SDL).[2] Ellison took inspiration[6] from the 1970 paper written by Edgar F. Codd on relational database management systems (RDBMS) named "A Relational Model of Data for Large Shared Data Banks".[7] He heard about the IBM System R database from an article in the IBM Research Journal provided by Oates. Ellison wanted to make Oracle's product compatible with System R, but failed to do so as IBM kept the error codes for their DBMS a secret. SDL changed its name to Relational Software, Inc (RSI) in 1979,[8] then again to Oracle Systems Corporation in 1982,[9] to align itself more closely with its flagship product Oracle Database. At this stage Bob Miner served as the company's senior programmer. On March 12, 1986, the company had its initial public offering.[10] In 1995, Oracle Systems Corporation changed its name to Oracle Corporation,[11] officially named Oracle, but sometimes referred to as Oracle Corporation, the name of the holding company.[12] Part of Oracle Corporation's early success arose from using the C programming language to implement its products. This eased porting to different operating systems (most of which support C).

Technology timeline

  • 1979: offers the first commercial SQL RDBMS

  • 1983: offers a VAX-mode database

  • 1984: offers the first database with read-consistency

  • 1986: offers a client-server DBMS

  • 1987: introduces UNIX-based Oracle applications

  • 1988: introduces PL/SQL.

  • 1992: offers full applications implementation methodology

  • 1995: offers the first 64-bit RDBMS

  • 1996: moves towards an open standards-based, web-enabled architecture

  • 1999: offers its first DBMS with XML support

  • 2001: becomes the first to complete 3 terabyte TPC-H world record

  • 2002: offers the first database to pass 15 industry standard security evaluations

  • 2003: introduces what it calls "Enterprise Grid Computing" with Oracle10g

  • 2005: releases its first free database, Oracle Database 10g Express Edition (XE)

  • 2006: acquires Siebel Systems

  • 2007: acquires Hyperion Solutions

  • 2008: Smart scans in software improve query-response in HP Oracle Database Machine / Exadata storage

  • 2010: acquires Sun Microsystems

  • 2013: begins use of Oracle 12c which is capable of providing cloud services with Oracle Database

  • 2014: acquires Micros Systems

  • 2016: acquires NetSuite Inc.

  • 2017: acquires Moat [165]

  • 2017: acquires Aconex

  • 2017: acquires Apiary [166]

  • 2017: acquires Wercker [167]


Development since 2005[[CITE|13|https://www.macrotrends.net/stocks/charts/ORCL/oracle/net-income]]
in mil. US$
Net Income
in mil. US$
Price per Share
in US$

Oracle ranked No. 82 in the 2018 Fortune 500 list of the largest United States corporations by total revenue.[14] According to Bloomberg, Oracle's CEO-to-employee pay ratio is 1,205:1. The CEO's compensation in 2017 was $108,295,023. Oracle is one of the approved employers of ACCA and the median employee compensation rate was $89,887.[15]

Products and services

Oracle designs, manufactures, and sells both software and hardware products, as well as offering services that complement them (such as financing, training, consulting, and hosting services). Many of the products have been added to Oracle's portfolio through acquisitions.


Oracle's E-delivery service (Oracle Software Delivery Cloud) provides generic downloadable Oracle software and documentation.[16]


  • Oracle Database

  • Release 10: In 2004, Oracle Corporation shipped release 10g (g standing for "grid") as the then latest version ofOracle Database. (Oracle Application Server10g usingJava EEintegrated with the server part of that version of the database, making it possible to deployweb-technology applications. The application server comprised the firstmiddle-tiersoftware designed forgrid computing. The interrelationship between Oracle 10g andJavaallowed developers to set upstored procedureswritten in the Java language, as well as those written in the traditional Oracle database programming language,PL/SQL.)
  • Release 11: Release 11g became the current Oracle Database version in 2007. Oracle Corporation released Oracle Database 11g Release 2 in September 2009. This version was available in four commercial editions—Enterprise Edition, Standard Edition, Standard Edition One, and Personal Edition—and in one free edition—the Express Edition. The licensing of these editions shows various restrictions and obligations that were called complex by licensing expert Freirich Florea.[17] The Enterprise Edition (DB EE), the most expensive of the Database Editions, has the fewest restrictions — but nevertheless has complex licensing. Oracle Corporation constrains the Standard Edition (DB SE) and Standard Edition One (SE1) with more licensing restrictions, in accordance with their lower price.
  • Release 12: Release 12c (c standing for "cloud") became available on July 1, 2013.[18]

Oracle Corporation has acquired and developed the following additional database technologies:

  • Berkeley DB, which offers embedded database processing

  • Oracle Rdb, a relational database system running on OpenVMS platforms. Oracle acquired Rdb in 1994 from Digital Equipment Corporation. Oracle has since made many enhancements to this product and development continues as of 2008.

  • TimesTen, which features in-memory database operations

  • Oracle Essbase, which continues the Hyperion Essbase tradition of multi-dimensional database management

  • MySQL, a relational database management system licensed under the GNU General Public License, initially developed by MySQL AB

  • Oracle NoSQL Database, a scalable, distributed key-value NoSQL database[19]


Oracle Fusion Middleware is a family of middleware software products, including (for instance) application server, system integration, business process management (BPM), user interaction, content management, identity management and business intelligence (BI) products.

Oracle Secure Enterprise Search (SES), Oracle's enterprise-search offering, gives users the ability to search for content across multiple locations, including websites, XML files, file servers, content management systems, enterprise resource planning systems, customer relationship management systems, business intelligence systems, and databases.

Oracle Beehive

Released in 2008, the Oracle Beehive collaboration software provides team workspaces (including wikis, team calendaring and file sharing), email, calendar, instant messaging, and conferencing on a single platform. Customers can use Beehive as licensed software or as software as a service ("SaaS").[20]


Oracle also sells a suite of business applications. The Oracle E-Business Suite includes software to perform various enterprise functions related to (for instance) financials, manufacturing, customer relationship management (CRM), enterprise resource planning (ERP) and human resource management. The Oracle Retail Suite[21] covers the retail-industry vertical, providing merchandise management, price management, invoice matching, allocations, store operations management, warehouse management, demand forecasting, merchandise financial planning, assortment planning and category management. Users can access these facilities through a browser interface over the Internet or via a corporate intranet.

Following a number of acquisitions beginning in 2003, especially in the area of applications, Oracle Corporation as of 2008 maintains a number of product lines:

  • Oracle Fusion Applications

  • Oracle Social Engagement and Monitoring (SEM) System – Oracle has developed a Social Engagement and Monitoring Cloud service that allows businesses to capture relevant brand conversation from global web and social channels to understand commentary on their products. The Social Engagement and Monitoring cloud provides the most effective and efficient responses across social and customer experience channels. SEM is able to route correct responses to the right team, member, or customer-experience channel to ensure the best customer service. The analysis helps vendors to understand what is important to customers. It identifies trends, spikes, and anomalies to make real-time course corrections. It also can identify brand advocates. The SEM cloud identifies customer intention and interests by analyzing the common ways customers talk about a product or a service.[22]

  • Oracle E-Business Suite

  • PeopleSoft Enterprise

  • Siebel

  • JD Edwards EnterpriseOne

  • JD Edwards World

  • Merchandise Operations Management (Formerly Retek)

  • Planning & Optimisation

  • Store Operations (Formerly 360Commerce)

Development of applications commonly takes place in Java (using Oracle JDeveloper) or through PL/SQL (using, for example, Oracle Forms and Oracle Reports/BIPublisher). Oracle Corporation has started a drive toward "wizard"-driven environments with a view to enabling non-programmers to produce simple data-driven applications.

Third-party applications

Oracle Corporation works with "Oracle Certified Partners" to enhance its overall product marketing. The variety of applications from third-party vendors includes database applications for archiving, splitting and control, ERP and CRM systems, as well as more niche and focused products providing a range of commercial functions in areas like human resources, financial control and governance, risk management, and compliance (GRC). Vendors include Hewlett-Packard, Creoal Consulting, UC4 Software,[23] Motus,[24] and Knoa Software.[25]

Enterprise management

Oracle Enterprise Manager (OEM) provides web-based monitoring and management tools for Oracle products (and for some third-party software), including database management, middleware management, application management, hardware and virtualization management and cloud management.[26]

The Primavera products of Oracle's Construction & Engineering Global Business Unit (CEGBU) consist of project-management software.[27]

Development software

Oracle Corporation's tools for developing applications include (among others):

  • Oracle Designer - a CASE tool which integrates with Oracle Developer Suite

  • Oracle Developer – which consists of Oracle Forms, Oracle Discoverer and Oracle Reports

  • Oracle JDeveloper, a freeware IDE

  • NetBeans, a Java-based software-development platform

  • Oracle Application Express – also known as APEX; for web-oriented development

  • Oracle SQL Developer, an integrated development environment for working with SQL-based databases

  • Oracle SQL*Plus Worksheet, a component of Oracle Enterprise Manager (OEM)

  • OEPE, Oracle Enterprise Pack for Eclipse

  • Open Java Development Kit

  • Oracle Developer Studio - a software generation system for the development of C, C++, Fortran, and Java software

Many external and third-party tools make the Oracle database administrator's tasks easier.

File systems

  • ZFS combines file-system and logical volume management functionality.

  • BtrFS "B-tree File-System" is meant to be an improvement over the existing Linux ext4 filesystem, and offer features approaching those of ZFS.

Operating systems

Oracle Corporation develops and supports two operating systems: Oracle Solaris and Oracle Linux.


  • The Sun hardware range acquired by Oracle Corporation's purchase of Sun Microsystems

  • Oracle SPARC T-series servers and M-series mainframes developed and released after Sun acquisition

  • Engineered systems: pre-engineered and pre-assembled hardware/software bundles for enterprise use Exadata Database Machine – hardware/software integrated storage[28] Exalogic Elastic Cloud – hardware/software integrated application server Exalytics In-Memory Machine – hardware/software integrated in-memory analytics server[29] Oracle Database Appliance[30] Big Data Appliance – integrated map-reduce/big data solution[31] SPARC SuperCluster T4-4 – a general purpose engineered system[32]


Oracle Cloud

Oracle Cloud is a cloud computing service offered by Oracle Corporation providing servers, storage, network, applications and services through a global network of Oracle Corporation managed data centers. The company allows these services to be provisioned on demand over the Internet.[33]

Oracle Cloud [168] provides Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), Software as a Service (SaaS) and Data as a Service (DaaS). These services are used to build, deploy, integrate and extend applications in the cloud. This platform supports open standards (SQLHTML5, REST, etc.) open-source solutions (Kubernetes, Hadoop, Kafka, etc.) and a variety of programming languagesdatabases, tools and frameworks including Oracle-specific, Open Source and third-party software and systems.[34]

  • Software as a Service (SaaS)[35] Enterprise applications: SCM, EPM, HCM, ERP and CX SaaS offerings[36]

  • Platform as a Service (PaaS)[35] Oracle has branded its Platform as a Service as Oracle Cloud Platform. Oracle Cloud Platform [169] offerings include Data Management, Application Development, Integration, Content and Experience, Business Analytics, Management and Security.[37][38] Platform services on which to build and deploy applications or extend SaaS applications: database, Java application server, mobile, business analytics, integration, process, big data, Internet of Things, Node.js etc.[39]

  • Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)[35] Oracle has branded its Infrastructure as a Service as Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI) [170] . Oracle Cloud Infrastructure offerings include the following services.[40] Compute Service Storage Service Network Service

On July 28, 2016 Oracle bought NetSuite, the very first cloud company, for $9.3 billion.[41] On May 16, 2018 Oracle announced that it had acquired DataScience.com, a privately held cloud workspace platform for data science projects and workloads.[42]

Other services

  • Oracle Consulting – technical and business expert services

  • Oracle Financing

  • Oracle Support Product support: Oracle Corporation identifies its customers and their support entitlements using CSI (Customer Support Identifier) codes.[43] Registered customers can submit Service Requests (SRs)[44]—usually via the web-accessible My Oracle Support[45] (MOS),[46] a re-incarnation of Oracle Metalink[47] with web access administered by a site Customer User Administrator (CUA).[48] Critical Patch Updates: since 2005 Oracle Corporation has grouped collections of patches and security fixes for its products each quarter into a "Critical Patch Update" (CPU), released each January, April, July and October.[49] Oracle Configuration Manager (OCM, previously Customer Configuration repository or CCR) gathers and uploads details of the configuration of Oracle software.[50] Oracle Auto Service Request (ASR) automatically creates Service Requests for specific hardware faults on qualified Oracle server, storage, Oracle Exadata, and Oracle Exalogic products.[51] My Oracle Support Community (MOSC)[52]

  • Oracle University (training in Oracle products)[53] Oracle Certification Program

  • NetSuite Social Impact program assists nonprofits with moving operations to the cloud. In October 2018, Oracle announced the expansion of the program to include product donation, pro bono expansion and online community building.[54]


Sales practices

In 1990, Oracle laid off 10% (about 400 people) of its work force because of accounting errors.[55] This crisis came about because of Oracle's "up-front" marketing strategy, in which sales people urged potential customers to buy the largest possible amount of software all at once. The sales people then booked the value of future license sales in the current quarter, thereby increasing their bonuses.[56] This became a problem when the future sales subsequently failed to materialize. Oracle eventually had to restate its earnings twice, and also settled (out of court) class-action lawsuits arising from its having overstated its earnings. Ellison stated in 1992 that Oracle had made "an incredible business mistake".[55]


In 1994, Informix overtook Sybase and became Oracle's most important rival. The intense war between Informix CEO Phil White and Ellison made front-page news in Silicon Valley for three years. Informix claimed that Oracle had hired away Informix engineers to disclose important trade secrets about an upcoming product. Informix finally dropped its lawsuit against Oracle in 1997.[57] In November 2005, a book detailing the war between Oracle and Informix was published, titled The Real Story of Informix Software and Phil White. It gave a detailed chronology of the battle of Informix against Oracle, and how Informix Software's CEO Phil White landed in jail because of his obsession with overtaking Ellison.

Once it had overcome Informix and Sybase, Oracle Corporation enjoyed years of dominance in the database market until use of Microsoft SQL Server became widespread in the late 1990s and IBM acquired Informix Software in 2001 (to complement its DB2 database). Today Oracle competes for new database licenses on UNIX, Linux, and Windows operating systems primarily against IBM's DB2 and Microsoft SQL Server. IBM's DB2 still dominates the mainframe database market.

In 2004, Oracle's sales grew at a rate of 14.5% to $6.2 billion, giving it 41.3% and the top share of the relational-database market (InformationWeek – March 2005), with market share estimated at up to 44.6% in 2005 by some sources.[58] Oracle Corporation's main competitors in the database arena remain IBM DB2 and Microsoft SQL Server, and to a lesser extent Sybase and Teradata,[58] with open source databases such as PostgreSQL and MySQL also having a significant[59] share of the market. EnterpriseDB, based on PostgreSQL, has recently made inroads[60] by proclaiming that its product delivers Oracle compatibility features at a much lower price-point.

In the software-applications market, Oracle Corporation primarily competes against SAP. On March 22, 2007 Oracle sued SAP, accusing them of fraud and unfair competition.[61]

In the market for business intelligence software, many other software companies—small and large—have successfully competed in quality with Oracle and SAP products. Business intelligence vendors can be categorized into the "big four" consolidated BI firms such as Oracle, who has entered BI market through a recent trend of acquisitions (including Hyperion Solutions), and the independent "pure play" vendors such as MicroStrategy, Actuate, and SAS.[62]

Oracle Financials was ranked in the Top 20 Most Popular Accounting Software Infographic by Capterra in 2014, beating out SAP and a number of their other competitors.[63]

Oracle and SAP

From 1988, Oracle Corporation and the German company SAP AG had a decade-long history of cooperation, beginning with the integration of SAP's R/3 enterprise application suite with Oracle's relational database products. Despite the SAP partnership with Microsoft, and the increasing integration of SAP applications with Microsoft products (such as Microsoft SQL Server, a competitor to Oracle Database), Oracle and SAP continue their cooperation. According to Oracle Corporation, the majority of SAP's customers use Oracle databases.[64]

In 2004, Oracle began to increase its interest in the enterprise-applications market (in 1989, Oracle had already released Oracle Financials). A series of acquisitions by Oracle Corporation began, most notably with those of PeopleSoft, Siebel Systems and Hyperion.

SAP recognized that Oracle had started to become a competitor in a market where SAP had the leadership, and saw an opportunity to lure in customers from those companies that Oracle Corporation had acquired. SAP would offer those customers special discounts on the licenses for its enterprise applications.

Oracle Corporation would resort to a similar strategy, by advising SAP customers to get "OFF SAP" (a play on the words of the acronym for its middleware platform "Oracle Fusion for SAP"),[65] and also by providing special discounts on licenses and services to SAP customers who chose Oracle Corporation products.

Currently Oracle and SAP (the latter through its recently acquired subsidiary TomorrowNow) compete in the third-party enterprise software maintenance and support market. On March 22, 2007, Oracle filed a lawsuit against SAP. In Oracle Corporation v. SAP AG Oracle alleged that TomorrowNow, which provides discount support for legacy Oracle product lines, used the accounts of former Oracle customers to systematically download patches and support documents from Oracle's website and to appropriate them for SAP's use.[66] Some analysts have suggested the suit could form part of a strategy by Oracle Corporation to decrease competition with SAP in the market for third-party enterprise software maintenance and support.[67]

On July 3, 2007, SAP admitted that TomorrowNow employees had made "inappropriate downloads" from the Oracle support website. However, it claims that SAP personnel and SAP customers had no access to Oracle intellectual property via TomorrowNow. SAP's CEO Henning Kagermann stated that "Even a single inappropriate download is unacceptable from my perspective. We regret very much that this occurred." Additionally, SAP announced that it had "instituted changes" in TomorrowNow's operational oversight.[68]

On November 23, 2010, a U.S. district court jury in Oakland, California found that SAP AG must pay Oracle Corp $1.3 billion for copyright infringement, awarding damages that could be the largest-ever for copyright infringement. While admitting liability, SAP estimated the damages at no more than $40 million, while Oracle claimed that they are at least $1.65 billion. The awarded amount is one of the 10 or 20 largest jury verdicts in U.S. legal history. SAP said they were disappointed by the verdict and might appeal.[69] On September 1, 2011, a federal judge overturned the judgment and offered a reduced amount or a new trial, calling Oracle's original award "grossly" excessive.[70] Oracle chose a new trial.

On August 3, 2012, SAP and Oracle agreed on a judgment for $306 million in damages, pending approval from the U.S. district court judge, “to save time and expense of [a] new trial". After the accord has been approved, Oracle can ask a federal appeals court to reinstate the earlier jury verdict. In addition to the damages payment, SAP has already paid Oracle $120 million for its legal fees.[71]


  • "Information driven"[72][73]

  • For the Oracle Database: "Can't break it, can't break in"[74] and "Unbreakable"[75]

  • Enabling the Information Age[76]

  • Enabling the Information Age Through Network Computing"[77][78][79]

  • As of 2008: "The Information Company"[80]

  • As of 2010: "Software. Hardware. Complete."[81]

  • As of late 2010: "Hardware and Software, Engineered to Work Together"[82][83]

  • As of mid 2015: "Integrated Cloud Applications and Platform Services"[84]


Oracle Corporation produces and distributes the "Oracle ClearView" series of videos as part of its marketing mix.[85]



In 2000, Oracle attracted attention from the computer industry and the press after hiring private investigators to dig through the trash of organizations involved in an antitrust trial involving Microsoft.[86] The Chairman of Oracle Corporation, Larry Ellison, staunchly defended his company's hiring of an East Coast detective agency to investigate groups that supported rival Microsoft Corporation during its antitrust trial, calling the snooping a "public service". The investigation reportedly included a $1,200 offer to janitors at the Association for Competitive Technology to look through Microsoft's trash. When asked how he would feel if others were looking into Oracle's business activities, Ellison said: "We will ship our garbage to Redmond, and they can go through it. We believe in full disclosure."[87]

"Can't break it, can't break in"

In 2002, Oracle Corporation marketed many of its products using the slogan "Can't break it, can't break in", or "Unbreakable".[88] This signified a demand on information security. Oracle Corporation also stressed the reliability of networked databases and network access to databases as major selling points.

However, two weeks after its introduction, David Litchfield, Alexander Kornbrust, Cesar Cerrudo and others demonstrated a whole suite of successful attacks against Oracle products.[89][90] Oracle Corporation's chief security officer Mary Ann Davidson said that, rather than representing a literal claim of Oracle's products' impregnability, she saw the campaign in the context of fourteen independent security evaluations[91] that Oracle Corporation's database server had passed.

Relationship with John Ashcroft

In 2004, then-United States Attorney General John Ashcroft sued Oracle Corporation to prevent it from acquiring a multibillion-dollar intelligence contract. After Ashcroft's resignation from government, he founded a lobbying firm, The Ashcroft Group, which Oracle hired in 2005. With the group's help, Oracle went on to acquire the contract.[92]

Expeditionary Combat Support System

Computer Sciences Corporation reportedly spent a billion dollars developing a computer system for the United States Air Force that yielded no significant capability, because, according to an Air Force source, the Oracle software on which the system was based could not be adapted to meet the specialized performance criteria.[93]

Cover Oregon Healthcare Exchange

Oracle Corporation was awarded a contract by the State of Oregon's Oregon Health Authority (OHA) to develop Cover Oregon, the state's healthcare exchange website, as part of the U.S. Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. When the site tried to go live on October 1, 2013, it failed, and registrations had to be taken using paper applications until the site could be fixed.

On April 25, 2014, the State of Oregon voted to discontinue Cover Oregon and instead use the federal exchange to enroll Oregon residents.[94] The cost of switching to the federal portal was estimated at $5 million, whereas fixing Cover Oregon would have required another $78 million.

Oracle president Safra Catz responded to Cover Oregon and the OHA in a letter claiming that the site's problems were due to OHA mismanagement, specifically that a third-party systems integrator was not hired to manage the complex project.[95][96]

In August 2014, Oracle Corporation sued Cover Oregon for breach of contract,[97] and then later that month the state of Oregon sued Oracle Corporation, in a civil complaint for breach of contract, fraud, filing false claims and "racketeering".[98] In September 2016, the two sides reached a settlement valued at over $100 million to the state, and a six-year agreement for Oracle to continue modernizing state software and IT.[99]


Acquisition of Sun Microsystems

On January 27, 2010, Oracle announced it had completed its acquisition of Sun Microsystems—valued at more than $7 billion—a move that transformed Oracle from solely a software company to a manufacturer of both software and hardware. The acquisition was delayed for several months by the European Commission because of concerns about MySQL, but was unconditionally approved in the end.[100] This acquisition was important to some in the open source community and also to some other companies, as they feared Oracle might end Sun's traditional support of open source projects.[101][102][103][104] Since the acquisition, Oracle has discontinued OpenSolaris and StarOffice, and sued Google over their newly acquired Java patents from Sun.[105][106] In September 2011, U.S. State Department Embassy cables were leaked[107] to WikiLeaks. One cable revealed that the U.S. pressured the E.U. to allow Oracle to acquire Sun.[108]

Justice Department lawsuit

On July 29, 2010, the United States Department of Justice filed suit against Oracle Corporation alleging fraud. The lawsuit argues that the government received deals inferior to those Oracle gave to its commercial clients. The DoJ added its heft to an already existing whistleblower lawsuit filed by Paul Frascella, who was once senior director of contract services at Oracle.[109] It was settled in May 2012[110]

Lawsuit against Google


Oracle, the plaintiff, bought the Java computer programing language when it acquired Sun Microsystems in January 2010.[111] The Java software includes sets of pre-developed software code in order to accomplish common tasks consistently among programs and apps. The pre-developed code is organized into separate "packages" which each contain a set of "classes". Each class contains numerous methods, which instruct a program or app to do a certain task. Software developers "became accustomed to using Java’s designations at the package, class, and method level".[112]

Oracle and Google (the defendant) tried to negotiate an agreement for Oracle to license Java to Google, which would have allowed Google to use Java in developing programs for mobile devices using the Android operating system. However, the two companies never reached an agreement. After negotiations failed, Google created its own programming platform, which was based on Java, and contained a mix of 37 copied Java packages and new packages developed by Google.[112]

First trial

In 2010, Oracle sued Google for copyright infringement for the use of the 37 Java packages.[112][111] The case was handled in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California and assigned to Judge William H. Alsup (who taught himself how to code computers[113]).[111] In the lawsuit, Oracle sought between $1.4 billion and $6.1 billion.[111] In June 2011 the judge had to force Google through a judicial order to make public the details about Oracle's claim for damages.[111]

By the end of the first jury trial (the legal dispute would eventually go on to another trial) the arguments made by Oracle's attorneys focused on a Java function called "rangeCheck".

"The argument centered on a function called rangeCheck. Of all the lines of code that Oracle had tested—15 million in total—these were the only ones that were 'literally' copied. Every keystroke, a perfect duplicate." – The Verge, 10/19/17[113]

Although Google admitted to copying the packages, Judge Alsup found that none of the Java packages were covered under copyright protection, and therefore Google did not infringe.[112]

First appeal

After the case was over, Oracle appealed to the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (750 F.3d 1339 (2014)).[112][114] On May 9, 2014, the appeals court partially reversed Judge Alsup's decision, finding that Java APIs are copyrightable. API stands for "application programming interface" and are how different computer programs or apps communicate with each other. However, the appeals court also left open the possibility that Google might have a "fair use" defense.[114]

Supreme Court petition

On October 6, 2014, Google filed a petition to appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, but the Supreme Court denied the petition.[114]

Second trial

The case was then returned to the U.S. District Court for another trial about Google's fair use defense.[114] Oracle sought $9 billion in damages.[115] In May 2016, the trial jury found that Google's use of Java's APIs was considered fair use.[114]

Second appeal

In February 2017, Oracle filed another appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.[114] This time it was asking for a new trial because the District Court "repeatedly undermined Oracle's case", which Oracle argued led the jury to make the wrong decision. According to ZDNet, "For example, it [Oracle] says the court wrongly bought Google's claim that Android was limited to smartphones while Java was for PCs, whereas Oracle contends that Java and Android both compete as platforms for smart TVs, cars, and wearables."[115]

Discontinuation of OpenSolaris

On August 13, 2010, an internal Oracle memo leaked to the Internet cited plans for ending the OpenSolaris operating system project and community.[116] With Oracle planning to develop Solaris only in a closed source fashion, OpenSolaris developers moved to the Illumos and OpenIndiana project, among others.[117]

Discontinuation of OpenSSO

As Oracle completed their acquisition of Sun Microsystems in February 2010, they announced that OpenSSO would no longer be their strategic product.[118] Shortly after, OpenSSO was forked to OpenAM.[118] and will continue to be developed and supported by ForgeRock.

Mark Hurd as president

On September 6, 2010, Oracle announced that former Hewlett-Packard CEO Mark Hurd was to replace Charles Phillips, who resigned as Oracle Co-President. In an official statement made by Larry Ellison, Phillips had previously expressed his desire to transition out of the company. Ellison had asked Phillips to stay on through the integration of Sun Microsystems Inc.[119] In a separate statement regarding the transition, Ellison said "Mark did a brilliant job at HP and I expect he'll do even better at Oracle. There is no executive in the IT world with more relevant experience than Mark."[120]

On September 7, 2010, HP announced a civil lawsuit against Mark Hurd "to protect HP's trade secrets",[121] in response to Oracle hiring Hurd. On September 20, Oracle and HP published a joint press release announcing the resolution of the lawsuit on confidential terms and reaffirming commitment to long-term strategic partnership between the companies.[122]

OpenOffice.org issue

A number of OpenOffice.org developers formed The Document Foundation and received backing by Google, Novell, Red Hat, and Canonical, as well as some others, but were unable to get Oracle to donate the brand OpenOffice.org, causing a fork in the development of OpenOffice.org with the foundation now developing and promoting LibreOffice. Oracle expressed no interest in sponsoring the new project and asked the OpenOffice.org developers that started the project to resign from the company due to "conflicts of interest". On November 1, 2010, 33 of the OpenOffice.org developers gave their letters of resignation.[123] On June 1, 2011, Oracle donated OpenOffice.org to the Apache Software Foundation.[124]

HP and Oracle lawsuit

On June 15, 2011, HP filed a lawsuit in California Superior Court in Santa Clara, claiming that Oracle had breached an agreement to support the Itanium microprocessor used in HP's high-end enterprise servers.[125] Oracle called the lawsuit "an abuse of the judicial process"[126] and said that had it known SAP's Leo Apotheker was about to be hired as HP's new CEO, any support for HP's Itanium servers would not have been implied.[127]

On August 1, 2012, a California judge said in a tentative ruling that Oracle must continue porting its software at no cost until HP discontinues its sales of Itanium-based servers.[128][129] HP was awarded $3 billion in damages against Oracle in 2016.[130] HP argued Oracle's canceling support damaged HP's Itanium server brand. Oracle has announced it will appeal both the decision and damages.

Foreign corrupt practices

On August 31, 2011, The Wall Street Journal reported that Oracle was being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation for paying bribes to government officials in order to win business in Africa, in contravention of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA).[131]

GSA business bidding ban

On April 20, 2012 the US General Services Administration banned Oracle from the most popular portal for bidding on GSA contracts for undisclosed reasons. Oracle has previously used this portal for around four hundred million dollars a year in revenue.[132] Oracle previously settled a lawsuit filed under the False Claims Act, which accused the company of overbilling the US government between 1998 and 2006. The 2011 settlement forced Oracle to pay $199.5 million to the General Services Administration.[133]


  • Mark Hurd: (CEO since September 2014),[134] previously co-president (since 2010). In 2007, Mark Hurd was ranked No. 16 on Fortune's list of the 25 Most Powerful People in Business.[135]

  • Safra Catz: (CEO since September 2014),[134] previously co-president (since 2004) and CFO.[136] In 2016, she was ranked 10th on Fortune's Most Powerful Women list.[137]

  • Larry Ellison: executive chairman and CTO (since September 2014), co-founder of the company, previously CEO (1977–2014),[134] previously chairman (1990–2004). He owns 25% of the company.

  • Jeff Henley: vice chairman (since September 2014), chairman (2004–2014). Previously CFO of Oracle (1991–2004).

  • Charles Phillips: past co-president and director from 2003 to 2010, replaced by Mark Hurd.

  • Ed Oates: co-founder of the company. Retired from Oracle in 1996.

  • Bob Miner: co-founder of the company and co-architect of Oracle Database. Led product design and development for Oracle Database from 1977 to 1992. Spun off a technology group within Oracle in 1992. Oracle board member until 1993.

  • Umang Gupta: former vice president and general manager (1981–1984). Wrote the first business plan for the company. Current chairman and CEO of Keynote Systems, Inc.

  • Bruce Scott: One of the first employees (number 4) at Oracle (then Software Development Laboratories), Scott served as the co-author and co-architect of Oracle V1, V2 and V3 until leaving Oracle in 1984.


Oracle Corporation has its overall headquarters on the San Francisco Peninsula in the Redwood Shores area of Redwood City, adjacent to Belmont and near San Carlos Airport (IATA airport code: SQL).

Oracle HQ stands on the former site of Marine World Africa USA, which moved from Redwood Shores to Vallejo in 1986. Oracle Corporation originally leased two buildings on the site, moving its finance and administration departments from the corporation's former headquarters on Davis Drive, Belmont, California. Eventually, Oracle purchased the complex and constructed a further four main buildings.

The distinctive Oracle Parkway buildings, nicknamed the Emerald City,[138] served as sets for the futuristic headquarters of the fictional company "NorthAm Robotics" in the Robin Williams film Bicentennial Man (1999).[139] The campus represented the headquarters of Cyberdyne Systems in the movie Terminator Genisys (2015).[140]

  • 300 Oracle Parkway at Oracle Corporation headquarters in Redwood Shores, California.

  • Oracle Aoyama Center Building, with Lexus International Gallery Aoyama

  • Oracle HQ, with Oracle Plaza building in left foreground

  • The Oracle Conference Center at Oracle Corporation headquarters in Redwood Shores, California

  • Fountain in the Oracle lake, Redwood Shores

  • Oracle Corporation has a major business campus at Thames Valley Park in Reading in England

  • Oracle in Markham, Ontario

Corporate structures

Oracle Corporation operates in multiple markets and has acquired several companies which formerly functioned autonomously. In some cases these provided the starting points for global business units (GBUs) targeting particular vertical markets.[141] Oracle Corporation GBUs include:

  • Communications

  • Construction and engineering - formerly the Primavera GBU

  • Financial services

  • Food and Beverages

  • Health sciences

  • Hospitality

  • Retail

  • Utilities


On October 20, 2006, the Golden State Warriors and the Oracle Corporation announced a 10-year agreement in which the Oakland Arena would become known as the Oracle Arena.[142]

Larry Ellison's sailing team competes as Oracle Team USA. The team has won the America's Cup twice, in 2010 (as BMW Oracle Racing)[143] and in 2013,[144] despite being penalized for cheating.[145][146]

Sean Tucker's "Challenger II" stunt biplane performs frequently at air shows around the US.[147]

On January 9, 2019, ESPN reported that the San Francisco Giants entered into a 20-year agreement to rename their stadium Oracle Park [148]

See also

  • List of acquisitions by Oracle

  • Oracle Applications

  • Oracle Certification Program

  • Oracle Clinical

  • Oracle Database

  • Oracle OpenWorld

  • Oracle Technology Network

  • Oracle Linux

  • Oracle User Group

  • Cover Oregon


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