Friday, March 23, 2007

ORACLE sues SAP for software stealing

At first sight it looks real big deal. Official accusation has 44 pages. In short, ORACLE claims that SAP committed violations of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, the Computer Data Access and Fraud Act, and intentional and negligent interference with prospective economic advantage.
The point is that somebody from IP address which belongs to wholly owned SAP company TomorrowNow made thousands downloads of ORACLE software from password protected ORACLE customer support site. Based on such a downloads SAP could undercut Oracle's support prices in an attempt to attract customers.
The fact is that TomorrowNow is a support services company for PeopleSoft, J.D. Edwards, and Siebel Products. Those products were bought by ORACLE in the past. So it is no wonder that such a support company is connecting PeopleSoft, J.D. Edwards, and Siebel support sites very often in order to support their customers which run these systems. So for ORACLE must prove in trail that SAP as an owner of TomorrowNow is making profit based on the matter of accusation.
Most likely Oracle won’t achieve anything except making new rumors in the market and presenting itself as more and more aggressive company. We will see. Oracle regularly and very often belittles SAP's products and strategies in public. They call SAP's NetWeaver product as "net deceiver". On other hand SAP has reacts to Oracle's "Project Fusion" as "confusion".
More information can be found at:CNN site, ORACLE site

-update on 26/03/2007-
Here's official SAP response statement issued late Friday 23/03/2007:
"SAP will not comment other than to make it clear to our customers, prospects, investors, employees and partners that SAP will aggressively defend against the claims made by Oracle in the lawsuit, SAP will remain focused on delivering products and services -- including those from TomorrowNow -- that ensure success for our customers."

-update on 28/03/2007-
The Wall Street Journal reported that chief executive of SAP's TomorrowNow subsidiary, Andrew Nelson, defended the unit's business practices in his first public response to a recent lawsuit from Oracle.
"We believe we've done absolutely nothing wrong, and we're going to defend our position vigorously," the newspaper quoted Nelson as saying. "We believe our model is an appropriate and legal way to do business."

-update on 11/04/2007-
TomorrowNow issued statement which says that they are still considering over what Oracles's accusation is about and what official SAP response to the legal action should be.
See more information here.

-update on 05/05/2007-
Oracle in their Motion for Interim Preservation Order is asking the judge to argue SAP to preserve electronic evidence related to the Oracle complaint. 

-update on 12/05/2007-
Judge Maxine Chesney of the U.S. District Court for Northern California announced that she decided to resign from the case because she found herself disqualified. This statement could cause a significant delay in the case.

-update on 03/07/2007-
In today's announcement SAP has declared that one of its units - TomorrowNow was authorized to download materials from Oracle's Web site on behalf of TomorrowNow customers."At the same time, that some inappropriate downloads of fixes and support documents occurred at TomorrowNow," SAP acknowledged. "We regret very much that this occurred," SAP Chief Executive Henning Kagermann said in a statement.

-update on 30/08/2007-
According statement introduced by Routers SAP AG is calling for quicker resolution of suit with ORACLE. SAP wants to have an appointment of a mediator which presense could lead to a settlement or at least help the parties.

-update on 15/09/2007- SAP has introduced special web site dedicated to its trail with ORACLE. ORACLE's page on this suit is here.

-update on 03/12/2007- CEO of TomorrowNow and other members of high management resigned and SAP is considering to sell this business unite.

-update on 07/01/2008 - Joshua Greenbaum is sharing his insight within this issue after attending SAP analyst summit held on December 4 and 5, 2006, at the Wynn Las Vegas Hotel and Resort.

-update on 18/02/2008 - Judge in charge of this law suit has ordered a mediation between two fighting companies.

-update on 18/04/2008 - ORACLE plans to extend charges in this trial according paper that was submitted to curt. Based no this new charges ORACLE claims that it is getting more serious since high management of SAP have been involved in in case saying that were aware of this "inappropriate downloads". Next case management conference will be held on April 24 of 2008.

-update on 29/06/2008 - ORACLE estimates its damage caused by TomorrowNow around $ 1 billion. Number seems to be unreal but event if that would be hundreds of millions $.

-update on 07/22/2008 - SAP is shutting down its company TomorrowNow as responsible for trial with ORACLE. After trying to find some buyer for this troubled unit they see this is a best way to do not get too much damage within trial. Most of TomorrowNow’s customers is shifting to its competitor Rimini Street – which is support provider for former independent software solution bought by ORACLE such as Siebel, BEA, PeopleSoft or JD Edwards.

-update on 09/22/2008 – SAP and ORACLE achieved agreement on terms of postponing of deliberation over TomorrowNow.

-update on 10/08/2008 – SAP and ORACLE talks on settlement has failed on meeting held behind closed doors at the U.S. district court in San Francisco. It is not surprising since SAP admitted "inappropriate downloads" but not that ORACLE is claiming. As a next step a teleconference call with court is scheduled to be hold on October 20th this year.

-update on 10/22/2008 – Federal judge ruled ORACLE to make an settlement till 13th Feb. 2009. This is suppose to be a sum of damage caused by TomorrowNow to ORACLE.

- update on 01/30/2010 – Oracle sues another firm by same subject. Now it is company called Rimini Street. This company was founded by same person - Seth Ravin as TomorrowNow was founded. The subject of more less same: “massive theft”. Rimini Street is well known as 3rd party support organization for EPR software. Check out more.

- update on 11/02/2010 – Finally court hearing is approaching. Let’s see if SAP can convincingly articulate its reasons in the case. Oracle has estimated damages to 2.3 billion of dollars and is pretty sure about its victory. Even FBI is interesting in this case – as FBI agent was in the court room during the hearings.

- update on 11/05/2010 – Ellison as Oracle CEO is going to testify on Monday Nov 8th; after testimony from SAP CFO - Werner Brandt. Brandt had to testify as Oracle counsel could not find former CEO and now-HP CEO Leo Apotheker. Reason of why Apotheker could not show up is that he traveled to visit HP’s offices around the world. It is just because he got on HP board recently J

- update on 11/08/2010 – Ellison in the court. As expected his speech was too theatrical. He doubled possible damages to 4 billion. He also estimated amount of lost customers to 20-30% of existing oracle’s customer portfolio. Simply it was theater for the masses.

- update on 11/15/2010 – SAP has admitted TomorrowNow's wrong doing and apologized that. That was done my testimony of current co-CEO Bill McDermott.

- update on 11/23/2010 – Jury Issues Verdict in Oracle v. SAP: Oracle must be paid interest on the 1.3 billion of dollars from SAP.  That what’s jury’s verdict is over the case of stolen intellectual property. In statement issued by SAP is written that amount ordered is inappropriate.

- update on 12/13/2010 – Oracle wants another 211 million.

- update on 12/31/2010 – Judge gives SAP a break on interest owed Oracle by different calculation as Oracle proposed.

- update on 01/26/2011 – SAP recorded record quarter Q4 as total revenue is 5.04 billion dollars. However they said that recent verdict of jury in Oracle suit will have an impact on this number.

- update on 01/26/2011 – SAP tries to reduce payment to Oracle by filing a motion to a US court.

- update on 04/27/2011 – SAP  is about to issue bonds in order to pay what was order by judge. Just still negotiating the amount and considering that case is not over. SAP was granted its request for a "stay of execution" while it proceeds with post-trial motions in the trial.

 - update on 07/13/2011 – SAP is arguing to lower amount of money order to pay by jury. This is supposed to be achieved by post-trial motions. See more details here.

- update on 01/09/2011 - A federal judge today granted SAP’s bid to overturn the  $1.3 billion verdict a jury awarded to Oracle in November. By thsi statement Oracle has 2 options. To accept $272 million award by judgment or run another round of trial one more time and prove in front of judge that damages are that extensive. Oracle is supposed to take decision by Sept. 30. Details here.

- update on 19/09/2011 - SAP on behalf of TomorrowNow has agreed to pay a $20m fine for unauthorized access to servers belonging to Oracle. See details here and here.

- update on 03/03/2012 - Oracle filed files for a retrial arguing damages awarded just aren't enough. Hearing in new case will start in July this year.

- update on 03/08/2012 - SAP agreed to pay ORACLE not less than $306m in order to close this trial.

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