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Oracle Buys Sun For $7.4 Billion

Gordon Kelly


Oracle Buys Sun For $7.4 Billion

It's the takeover deal of 2009 so far and with the R-word still biting may well prove the biggest tech acquisition of 2009: Oracle has entered into a definitive agreement to buy Sun Microsystems in a cash deal valued at $7.4bn.

The figure rates Sun stock at roughly $9.50 per share, a near 50 per cent price premium on its Friday trading value. The entire package comes out at $5.6bn when taking Sun's cash and debt into account.

"The acquisition of Sun transforms the IT industry, combining best-in-class enterprise software and mission-critical computing systems," said famously outspoken Oracle CEO Larry Ellison in a statement. "Oracle will be the only company that can engineer an integrated system - applications to disk - where all the pieces fit and work together so customers do not have to do it themselves. Our customers benefit as their systems integration costs go down while system performance, reliability and security go up."

"Oracle and Sun have been industry pioneers and close partners for more than 20 years," said equally famed rent-a-quote Sun Chairman Scott McNealy. "This combination is a natural evolution of our relationship and will be an industry-defining event."

No timeframe has been placed on completion of the deal though a summer conclusion seems likely. There is also no word on how it will affect workers between the two companies. Sun CEO Jonathan Schwartz did however describe the purchase as "a fantastic day for Sun's customers, developers, partners and employees across the globe" so we'll see.

Ultimately, the purchase comes as something of a shock as IBM had long been the front runner and was close to agreeing a deal valuing Sun shares at $10 each. It reconsidered however and changed the offer to $9.40 a share and that has proved a costly mistake. Dell is also thought to be less than pleased to miss out.

So now Oracle has the software and the hardware. Larry Ellison is going to be even more quotable than before!


Press Release


April 21, 2009, 12:14 am

That's potentially bad news for Java ME and FX, I hope Oracle are planning on expanding their influence.


April 21, 2009, 3:14 am

I'm really hoping this is a good day for Java - I don't believe it's potential has been fully realised and promoted enough by Sun.

The fact that you can write a powerful, multi-threaded server app in just a few lines of relatively easy to read code, yet which can today run at very high-speed thanks to years of optimisation work (quite unlike chuggy early editions of Java)... what's not to like?

Especially when the same app can run on any platform (except iPhone - damn you Apple).

Don't judge Java by those half-baked phone games you might have seen - it really is a phenomenal development technology that should have a golden future ahead of it.


April 21, 2009, 5:37 pm

@Bailey's_Coffee: t really is a phenomenal development technology that should have a golden future ahead of it.

Well, I'm not knocking Java per se, but I believe it's not got a very bright future. Unfortunately .NET & it's CLR was the final nail in the coffin there, as well as being able to use the language of your choice, it's also faster. And creating a mult-threaded server app in just a few lines of code is possible with most languages.

Unfortunately Apple has not gone down the CLR route either, it prepares it's tried & tested Objective C.


April 21, 2009, 7:59 pm

"Unfortunately .NET & it's CLR was the final nail in the coffin there"

It's risible to assert that .NET is anything other than a poorly designed, poorly implemented Java clone. The nails in the coffin of both .NET and Java are the ubiquitous open source technologies: HTTP, Python, PERL, PHP, JavaScript, etc.


April 21, 2009, 8:40 pm

@Keith: You can use the language of your choice on the JRE as well. It doesn't support C or BASIC but it does have the popular modern languages like Haskell, Python and Ruby.


April 21, 2009, 10:25 pm

@gurnaik & @Xiphias, Your both mistaking .NET to mean Websites, I actually pointed out the part I was referring too, aka CLR, and having basically an interpreted language to run another interpreted language is not a good idea in my books. Please investigate what CLR is all about, then come back and say Java has a bright future. Saying this, I still believe Java currently still got one thing going for it, more platform independence, but with projects like MONO well into gear now this is not going to stay forever. Like I said, I'm not knocking Java it's been a good multi-platform language, but unfortunately things do change. You never know they may even be a Java CLR compiler in the pipeworks. btw. @gurnaik the CLR is an open standard, IOW: opensource friendly. :)

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