Oracle makes another insurance software buy

Oracle has scooped up another insurance software vendor, the company announced Monday.

In another move to beef up its strategy in the insurance sector, Oracle has bought Skywire Software's application business for an undisclosed sum, the company announced Monday.

The move follows Oracle's May announcement that it plans to buy AdminServer, which makes policy lifecycle management software for the insurance industry.

Skywire Software has 1,450 customers, according to a statement. In addition to insurance companies, the company also focuses on the legal and financial services verticals.

Oracle said the Frisco, Texas, company's specialized technology, which includes software for connecting insurance agents, brokers and carriers, will complement its own insurance, CRM (customer relationship management) and content management products.

The deal is expected to close in the second half of this year, and does not include Skywire's business process outsourcing business or its iWave IT automation software, Oracle said.

Oracle previously announced the creation of a new global business unit focused on insurance. Skywire's technology and workers will be moved into this division along with AdminServer's, according to the statement.

Analysts have predicted Oracle's push into insurance will kick off a wave of consolidation and responsive moves from the company's competitors, such as SAP.

A rich prize is at stake. The insurance software market is worth between US$2 billion and $4 billion, said Matthew Josefowicz, director of the insurance practice at the research firm Novarica, in a previous interview.

Oracle's announcement comes just days before its scheduled year-end earnings call, and about a week after it pushed through a number of significant price hikes on its products.

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