IT consultant, Lee Curtis told CRN, Oracle's decision to acquire Sun for US$7.4 billion was a much needed boost for the vendor.
"Someone needed to do it," he said.
"Sun was struggling and there have been redundancies made globally.
"I have friends and colleagues that found themselves out of jobs a couple of weeks ago."
Curtis said the vendor started moving down the server/storage line six month ago, starting with a HP partnership.
"[Oracle] is a massive force and it's a good deal for the vendor," said Curtis.
"It's one of the big guys in town and CIOs know its name."
Curtis believes the deal will have a good impact on the open source market.
"Sun has a huge range of open source spearheaded by Java - the language of choice for the enterprise market," he said.
"Oracle's stamp behind Sun shifts some of the people that have had a negative view of open source.
"The vendor is a software specialist with enormous play in the market and it's a big fan of open source, this could help open minds about the platform."
Con Zymaris, CEO of long-running Linux firm Cybersource, told CRN Oracle's decision to acquire Sun won't damage the vendor's applications.
He said 10 years ago, the vendor was considered to be one of the cornerstones of enterprise computing.
Within that time period, the market has shifted to ever more open computing solutions, and Sun, as with many vendors, had to move with it.
Sun presently has a range of important open source applications and platforms, including OpenSolaris, Java, OpenOffice.org, MySQL and NetBeans.
Of these, OpenSolaris, and Java were already considered 'enterprise grade' and while it's possible for Oracle to continue to push these technologies further into the enterprise, the jump want be a dramatic one.
"It would not be in Oracle's interests to have MySQL scale the enterprise barrier, as it would then compete more directly with one of its cash-cows - Oracle RDBMS 11 database platform," said Zymaris.
"It would be in Oracle's interests to use MySQL to wipe the floor with Microsoft's SQL, undercutting the Microsoft product on flexibility and price, thus weakening it as a possible competitor to Oracle's RDBMS product."
Zymaris said it might be of importance to Oracle to push OpenOffice.org into corporate accounts, as a serious competitive wedge against Microsoft.
"It's got nothing to lose and a lot to gain by taking the monetary wind out of Microsoft's Office sales," he said.
He said the key point to note about all deal is that any technologies which have real industry momentum, for example, MySQL, OpenOffice.org and Java, cannot be seriously damaged though Oracle's acquisition.
"Even if Oracle attempts to smother them," he said.
"As these are all open source, many other vendors, along with the open source community, can continue to develop and extend these products, irrespective of Oracle's actions.
"The community can in effect 'fork' the codebases for each former Sun open source technology, bypassing any 'damage' that Oracle may try and inflict.
"In the end, all Oracle's is buying is the brand-name, not the source code."
Oracle's decision to strike a deal for Sun was timely as the vendor has been dealt with a few blows recently.
In January, the vendor announced improved sales of entry-level SPARC and x86-based servers and increased billings for its Java and MySQL software.
However there was a drop in overall revenue of 10.9 percent to US$3.6 billion in its second fiscal quarter, which ended 28 December 2008. The company also reported a loss of US$209 million, or US28 cents per share, a dramatic drop compared to its profit of US$260 million, or 31 cents per share, during the same period last year.
The vendor reported to CRN's sister publication Channelweb.com, that it planned to reduce its global workforce by between 5,000 to 6,000 employees, or about 15 percent to 18 percent of its workforce, and that in January it sent layoff notifications to about 1,300 employees as part of that action.
IBM was also thought to be a front runner for Sun, however it shut down talks to purchase the company in early April.
David Mitchell, vice president IT Services at research firm, Ovum, told CRN, the deal would enhance an already strong component of its go to market portfolio.
"They do very much complement each other," he said.
"Once integration is completed we will [get] answers to the main questions around product portfolio, sales and marketing organisation, customer support, etc.
"[Sun fills] in the holes in Oracle's portfolio of offerings."
Mitchell said the acquisition was a continuation of a massive industry consolidation that has been happening over the past few years and will only continue.
Issue: 316 | July 2013
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