Database titan Larry Ellison’s Oracle is slurping NetSuite - a company he and his family already own a big slice of - for a cool $9.3bn (£7bn) to help him compete better with Salesforce, another firm he part owns.
The buy will see Oracle splash $109 per share on the first ever purveyor of software clouds: NetSuite was set up as NetLedger in 1998 to sell web-hosted accounting wares and was later named Oracle Small Business Suite before it adopted the latest brand.
One-time HP chopper in chief and Oracle co-boss Mark Hurd, insisted the companies cloud apps will “coexist in the marketplace forever” and that his employer “intend to invest heavily in both products - engineering and distribution”.
Netsuite is a relative minnow compared to Oracle - for calendar 2015 it turned over $741m (£563m), a jump of 33 per cent on the prior year. But operating expenses of $611.38m left an operating loss of $115.6m, wider than the operating loss of $83.3m reported in 2014.
Some 4,603 staffers worked for the organisation last year.
In contrast Oracle's fiscal ’16 results were $37bn (£28bn), down three per cent on the previous year, and net profit was $8.9bn, down 10 per cent.
Cloud provided the most significant growth for Oracle, up 36 per cent to $2.85bn (£2.1bn) but this looks slim compared to AWS, Microsoft or Google. Oracle has started to strong arm customers to leap into the cloud by releasing versions of its off-premise software first.
Ellison already owns 39.7 per cent of NetSuite and so the transaction - which is expected to close this year once regulatory and shareholder approval is achieved, might just help to pay for some more adult toys.
The perma-tanned one also invested $2bn in Salesforce though he is no longer on the board there. ®