SAP to Ellison: Save the Drama for Your Mama

Published on October 27, 2010
by John Paczkowski

Lest anyone forget–and given the back-and-forth between Oracle and Hewlett-Packard these past few months, you could be forgiven for doing so–Oracle’s opponent in its upcoming intellectual property trial is SAP–not HP.

And SAP finds all the histrionics between the two companies a bit much. And as far as Oracle CEO Larry Ellison’s goading of former SAP CEO Léo Apotheker, well, SAP says Larry needs to get his facts straight.

This morning, the company took issue with Ellison’s claim that Apotheker “allowed the theft of Oracle property to continue for 8 months after he was made sole CEO of SAP.”

“This is more of the sideshow and clearly shows that Ellison’s true motivation is his personal vendetta against Apotheker and the HP board,” a spokesperson told me. “SAP remains focused on the core issues of the case–determining fair and accurate levels of compensation. These personal tirades are a distraction and, sadly, not even factually accurate.”

Which is true to a point, though I’d argue that Ellison’s tirades are more entertainment than distraction. Apotheker didn’t become SAP’s sole CEO until June of 2009–seven months after SAP shuttered the TomorrowNow division at the center of Oracle’s suit.

So SAP is right. Ellison’s rant isn’t quite factually accurate. That said, were one to swap in “co-CEO” for “sole CEO,” it would be.

So as a parry to Ellison’s broadside, this is pretty weak stuff. If it’s the best SAP’s got, it doesn’t stand a chance in this developing war of words.


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