Sensible Sun customers wait out Oracle merger

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Sensible Sun customers wait out Oracle merger

"Sensible" Sun hardware customers will wait out uncertainty over the Oracle acquisition rather than buy kit from rivals like IBM and HP, according to Frontline Systems.

General manager Bill Frangeskakis believed Sun's hardware competitors would be "stupid" if they didn't seek to take advantage of ongoing delays in its acquisition by Oracle.

But all they could offer Sun customers was to "try and sell [them] a bit of fear, uncertainty and doubt", he told CRN.

"If you look at the enterprise space, are those customers going to throw out Sun technology and put in IBM or HP for the sake of some perceived risk in the future? No way - not until there's more clarity," Frangeskakis said.

"The unfortunate thing is the [European Commission] layer of the [acquisition] approval process adds weight to the clarity issue.

"But any sensible organisation would wait it out."

HP claimed yesterday it had won business from uncertain Sun customers at a rate of one customer per day worldwide in the year to October. Sun's recent quarterly shipment results also appeared to confirm they were losing market share to competitors.

Frangeskakis said if the acquisition went ahead it would be a positive for Frontline, which has held partnerships with both vendors "since about the mid 90s".

"A good 60 percent of our customer base is [on] Sun [hardware], and of that 90-plus percent would have Oracle in some form or another," he said.

He said Frontline's Sun business had not suffered from the ongoing uncertainty and claimed it was growing.

Frangeskakis also said that a joint Oracle-Sun entity would make Frontline "Oracle's largest partner by revenue in Australia."

He believed the acquisition would be a positive for Sun, in particular.

"It will give the Sun product set a bit of a jab in the arm and a boost in investment around their technology, which will lead to more sales and work for us.

"It's no secret that Sun's profitability was not where it should have been in the marketplace. [Oracle] are perceived to be a larger more profitable organisation that will continue to invest the right amount of dollars into the Sun product set."

Frontline Systems employs around 170 people and also has partner agreements with the likes of HP, F5, Cisco and Microsoft.

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