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Oracle CEO 'Speechless' About HP's New Hire

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 22 comments

Last week, HP made headlines when it appointed former SAP CEO Leo Apotheker its new CEO. Since then, Oracle CEO Larry Ellison has been pretty vocal about his feelings on HP's decision to hire the former chief of an Oracle rival.

HP's hiring of Apotheker has largely been seen as a retort to Oracle's decision to hire former CEO of HP Mark Hurd just a few weeks after he resigned. Though HP tried to stop Hurd from taking up his new post as co-President of Oracle by suing him, the two parties eventually settled the lawsuit out of court.

However, it seems Oracle Chief Larry Ellison is a little less than impressed with the appointing of Apotheker as CEO of HP. In an email to the Wall Street Journal, Ellison said the decision had rendered him speechless.

"I’m speechless," he said, adding, "HP had several good internal candidates…but instead they pick a guy who was recently fired because he did such a bad job of running SAP."

Ellison goes on to say that though HP board members don't own much company stock, employees, customers and managers do and they will suffer as a result of this bad hire.

"None of the HP board members own much HP stock so they have little to lose," he told WSJ. "But the HP employees, customers, partners and shareholders will suffer.  The HP board needs to resign en masse … right away.  The madness must stop."

Though those words are damning enough, it seems Ellison was in fine, fighting form and again took the opportunity to criticize Apotheker's management skills when asked for a statement for the Financial Times. This time, Ellison referred an ongoing lawsuit (filed in 2007) that accuses SAP-owned software maintenance company TomorrowNow of pirating customers' copies of Oracle software. SAP has admitted copyright and computer violations but argues that Oracle's request for $1 billion in damages is excessive.

"SAP has already publicly confessed and accepted financial responsibility for systematically stealing Oracle’s intellectual property over a long period of time," Ellison told FT. "Much of this industrial espionage and intellectual property theft occurred while Leo was CEO of SAP," he continued. "The HP board must have been aware of these facts, yet they appointed Leo CEO of HP anyway. What happened to ‘The HP Way’?"

HP refused to comment on Ellison's remarks when asked by both the Wall Street Journal and the Financial Times. A HP spokesperson told WSJ Ellison's email didn't "deserve the dignity of a response."

Source: Financial Times, Wall Street Journal

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Top Comments
  • 13 Hide
    TeKEffect , October 5, 2010 1:05 AM
    The HP board is a special group and not the good special.
  • 10 Hide
    bhaberle , October 5, 2010 12:11 AM
    HP has been going down the crapper lately in terms of decision making so nothing they do surprises me now.
Other Comments
  • 10 Hide
    bhaberle , October 5, 2010 12:11 AM
    HP has been going down the crapper lately in terms of decision making so nothing they do surprises me now.
  • -3 Hide
    Jung , October 5, 2010 12:25 AM
    Seems like they hired someone who wont rape the company and employees for short term gain. We'll see.
  • 6 Hide
    ta152h , October 5, 2010 12:28 AM
    Part of me finds a CEO acting so common disappointing and undignified, another part of me loves the fact he says it like it is, without making even the slightest attempt to soften his attacks.
  • 13 Hide
    TeKEffect , October 5, 2010 1:05 AM
    The HP board is a special group and not the good special.
  • 0 Hide
    Darkerson , October 5, 2010 1:13 AM
    One good turn deserves another /sarcasm
  • -4 Hide
    guitarpeggio , October 5, 2010 1:34 AM
    All of these rich bastards are the same. Do not care.
  • 1 Hide
    frostyfireball , October 5, 2010 3:19 AM
    I'm sure they see something in the guy, it just might not be obvious to us.
  • -4 Hide
    smeker , October 5, 2010 3:31 AM
    guitarpeggioAll of these rich bastards are the same. Do not care.

    Yep pretty much, money talks
  • 9 Hide
    gsacks , October 5, 2010 4:24 AM
    Larry Ellison is a pompous ass. Very successful businessman but with a serious inferiority complex. Back well Bill Gates was being ruthless and more successful than Ellison, he was the target of Ellison's wrath. Ellison helped fuel the 'Bill Gates is evil and bad for the software industry' movement. Now that BG is retired and being all philanthropic, Larry needs a new target. It would have been Sun, but he went and bought them, so he has wildly lashed out at the next closest target, HP. I'm not saying that HP is great or anything. Just that Ellison always seems to be on the offensive against someone. ---- Oh, and he is killing all of Sun's open source initiatives, so he is a double super ass with a cherry on top.
  • 1 Hide
    beachbod , October 5, 2010 5:17 AM
    Part of me wants to be on HPs side but its kind of hard when an ink cartridge costs an arm and a leg.
  • -2 Hide
    zerapio , October 5, 2010 5:55 AM
    And now we're going to take HP's sloppy seconds and have her run the state. I can see how that will end.
  • -2 Hide
    dEAne , October 5, 2010 8:55 AM
    He looks like the guy from the Greek mythology. He is good.
  • 1 Hide
    goodsyntax , October 5, 2010 12:46 PM
    Ellison is a pompous ass, but I find it refreshing that a person in the spotlight can speak his mind instead of playing the politically correct, don't offend anyone tactic of speaking without actually saying anything of substance.

    If you filter out the childish notes, you can see a very valid point. Apotheker has run SAP into the ground. A few years back, SAP was the dominant force, but since Apotheker ran the show, SAP has lost market share and more importantly, mind share. PeopleSoft, Oracle and others have steadily grown while SAP has shrunk.

    At this time HP needs a visionary. Their products are growing stale and they have not released any truly innovative products in years. Instead of innovating and being the first to market with server blades, low power servers, unified threat appliances, unified communication appliances, etc., they essentially clone the ideas of the market leaders. There was a time when HP printers were innovative, indestructible, and feature rich, now they are commodity pieces with no differentiators. Same goes for their PCs, servers and other devices.
  • 4 Hide
    zak_mckraken , October 5, 2010 1:34 PM
    Quote:
    Oracle CEO 'Speechless' About HP's New Hire

    Quote:
    Oracle CEO Larry Ellison has been pretty vocal


    Contradict much? Maybe the guy is bipolar.
  • 1 Hide
    eyemaster , October 5, 2010 2:16 PM
    For the past 15 years, HP has been going downhill but yet staying in the same spot. Blunder after blunder, yet still not close to closing their doors.
  • 1 Hide
    theroguex , October 5, 2010 3:45 PM
    Wait. How do HP's board members have little company stock? Don't you have to own a large percentage of stock in order to be on the board?
  • 3 Hide
    theoutbound , October 5, 2010 4:25 PM
    When did nerd fights turn into "Oh no they didn't"? Settle this over D&D like men.
  • 3 Hide
    Anonymous , October 5, 2010 4:56 PM
    He sure does talk a lot for someone who's `speechless`.
  • 2 Hide
    Jung , October 5, 2010 5:03 PM
    He's just pissed they gave his corrupt buddy the boot.
  • 1 Hide
    Darkv1 , October 5, 2010 9:44 PM
    theoutboundWhen did nerd fights turn into "Oh no they didn't"? Settle this over D&D like men.

    Bring out the the D20's.
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