2014年9月20日 星期六

Larry Ellison


Larry_Ellison_2013_(9887589546)
在 1977 年創立甲骨文(Oracle)這間價值 1,850 億美元企業的艾利森(Larry Ellison),宣佈將卸下擔任了 37 個年頭的執行長一職,交棒給赫德(Mark Hurd)與凱茲(Safra Catz)兩位現任總裁共同治理,自己則退居董事長及技術長的位置繼續留在公司。
上個月剛過完 70 歲生日的艾利森,名列彭博富豪榜第 7,身價高達 459 億美元,自大學時期輟學創辦甲骨文後,便一直擔任執行長至今。這位科技界的傳奇人物,以不惜一切代價購併來強化競爭力的鐵腕聞名,即使裁員千人或鬧上法庭,也要達到收購目的。2005 年時 103 億美元買下人事管理軟體仁科(PeopleSoft)鬧得沸沸揚揚,甚至威脅仁科執行長康威(Craig Conway)的人身安全。
綜觀矽谷的科技先趨們,幾乎都已改朝換代,比爾蓋茲(Bill Gates)10 多年前就離開微軟執行長的位置,賈伯斯(Steve Jobs)2011 年逝世前也將蘋果交給庫克(Tim Cook),惠普的董事會與核心經營團隊也不復見兩位創辦人的家族成員,一手帶領甲骨文成為全球頂尖資料庫與商用軟體企業的艾利森,如今也要步入交棒行列。
甲骨文宣布,兩位現任總裁赫德(Mark Hurd)與凱茲(Safra Catz)將擔任共同執行長,前者掌管銷售、服務以及行銷策略,後者負責財務、法務及製造事業,艾利森則以技術長的身分繼續領導研發團隊。兩位接班人一直是艾利森相當信賴的合作夥伴,對於這項決定的原因,他僅回應:「Mark 和 Safra 都已交出了優異的工作成績,……,他們應該得到認可,執行長是他們應得的頭銜。」他也強調,這項人事變動不會對甲骨文的現況帶來太大影響,畢竟維持經營與管理的穩定性仍是首要責任。
(首圖圖片來源:Wikipedia;本文由數位時代授權轉載) 


Larry Ellison: Sun Buy Paid for Itself, Now We Crush IBM

Larry Ellison and Sun founder Scott McNealy in 2009. Photo: Flickr/Yuichi Sakuraba
Larry Ellison has bought a lot of companies in his 35 years as Oracle’s chief executive, but he says that none has turned out better than his 2010 acquisition of Sun Microsystems.
“Sun has been by far our most profitable acquisition. It has already paid for itself,” he said in an interview with Kara Swisher at the D: All Things Digital conference posted to the internet Wednesday. Sun cost Oracle $7.4 billion, but Sun had nearly $2 billion in cash at the time, making the deal net out at $5.6 billion. That $5.6 was apparently the number Ellison was referring to.
Oracle has lost server market share since buying Sun, and former employees say that Oracle has flipped the culture at the Sun business unit. Before the acquisition, Sun was run by the engineers. Now, at Oracle, it’s run by the financial people.
That seems to suit Larry Ellison just fine. According to him, Sun is now a much better business. “People say: ‘Oh but your hardware business is going down.’ Well, yeah, in the unprofitable part of it that we’re getting out of,” he said. “So we used to sell other people’s disk drives and we used to bid on contracts where we lost money. Our margins now in our hardware business are now probably the highest margins of anyone in the server business.”
Oracle is enmeshed in legal disputes with Hewlett-Packard, Google and SAP, but in the interview, Ellison seemed to be singularly interested in one competitor: IBM.

“If you look at where we compete with IBM, they used to be number one in database; we’re number one in database; they used to be number one in middleware; we’re now number one in middleware. They’re number one in servers right now, in high-end servers, and with our new Exadata machines and Exalogic machines, I argue that it will be a couple of years and then we’ll pass them in high-end servers.”
Another area where IBM is ahead of Oracle is cloud computing. To date, IBM has promoted its cloud services more aggressively than Oracle. In fact, not so very long ago Ellison famously tagged cloud computing as redundant, insane gibberish.
But last fall, Ellison changed course and introduced Oracle’s own Public Cloud. And onstage this week, Ellison said his company was readying an update to the service, set for next week, where Oracle is expected to add important business tools — Enterprise Resource Planning and Customer Relationship Management — to its cloud products.
That event will also mark the occasion of his first Twitter messages, Ellison said.
We hope his Tweets will be as colorful as his interviews.

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