The SAP Question - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

IoT
IoT
Software // Information Management
Commentary
7/22/2004
02:34 PM
Ted Kemp
Ted Kemp
Commentary
50%
50%

The SAP Question

Should Oracle and PeopleSoft be viewed in the context of a global market, or a domestic one?

The fun is over in San Francisco, with attorneys for the U.S. Justice Department and Oracle having wrapped up their arguments in the trial that will determine whether Oracle should be allowed to gobble up PeopleSoft. And it may be that the court's decision, due the next couple months, will turn on a question that didn't get a lot of press during the trial itself: Should Oracle and PeopleSoft be viewed in the context of a global market, or a domestic one?

The perceived strength of Germany's power software player, SAP, is likely to factor more powerfully in Judge Vaughn Walker's thinking than a lot of people watching this trial have acknowledged. Walker indicated, in questions posed to attorneys from both sides following closing arguments, that he doesn't buy Oracle's argument that Microsoft provides adequate competition with Oracle in the enterprise applications market. Walker did indicate, however, that he gave credence (as well he should have) to the parade of customer witnesses who said that enterprise applications are a three-company market now dominated by Oracle, PeopleSoft and SAP.

So, assuming the reporters in the courtroom got the right read on Walker, the question might become, Does competition from SAP count? It seems to me that if you perceive domestic software buyers' options as being mainly the domestic manufacturers, the answer is no. But if you perceive their options as being manufacturers that come from anywhere on earth, the answer is yes.

It doesn't help the government's case against Oracle that SAP this morning reported U.S. software sales that jumped 70 percent, excluding the impact of currency exchange rates. Will SAP's growing strength in the United States impact the court's thinking on whether we can get by with only one major domestic enterprise applications maker? Any answer is pure speculation. But I'm betting that question will be the central influence on Judge Walker's mind as he spends time in chambers for the next two months, deciding the next and possibly final turn in the Oracle-PeopleSoft saga.

We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
InformationWeek Is Getting an Upgrade!

Find out more about our plans to improve the look, functionality, and performance of the InformationWeek site in the coming months.

Slideshows
IT Leadership: 10 Ways to Unleash Enterprise Innovation
Lisa Morgan, Freelance Writer,  6/8/2021
Commentary
Preparing for the Upcoming Quantum Computing Revolution
John Edwards, Technology Journalist & Author,  6/3/2021
News
How SolarWinds Changed Cybersecurity Leadership's Priorities
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  5/26/2021
White Papers
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Video
Current Issue
Planning Your Digital Transformation Roadmap
Download this report to learn about the latest technologies and best practices or ensuring a successful transition from outdated business transformation tactics.
Slideshows
Flash Poll