Oracle previews future strategy

Outsourcing for the mid-sized market and cost of ownership will be two key areas of focus for this year's Oracle AppsWorld conference in the US, according to company officials.

Jeff Henley, executive vice-president and CFO for Oracle, said in a Monday keynote address that these areas, along with consolidation and Oracle's ongoing relationship with Linux are going to be important for the company and the industry in the days ahead.

Mark Jarvis, chief marketing officer for Oracle, told delegates that one of Oracle's new offerings for customers, Business Flow Accelerators, offers customers a series bundled product and service packages designed to help them improve business processes and boost ROI.

This will allow clients to take an incremental approach to implementing Oracle's e-business suite, he added. For instance, using them would allow customers to take horizontal applications, such as accounting and payroll, and outsource them, giving more resources to internal differential software or product development and integration.

Henley also noted that Oracle has seen significant growth in the mid-market. This is especially apparent in terms of outsourcing, a capability Oracle has been focused on for four years, according to Henley.

Linux is probably one of the hottest platforms on the market, Henley said, noting that its low cost and robust performance appeals to users. Oracle will continue working closely with Linux, he said.

Last year Oracle CEO Larry Ellison said Linux did not seem to be at a mature stage, but today Oracle completely supports Linux, and Jarvis said Linux is "very much ready for use."

The Oracle/Linux and bundled offerings will help companies find lower total cost of ownership, he added.

Henley predicted slow but continued growth for the tech industry. Oracle's last few quarters had all experienced negative revenue growth, he said. "(But) for the next quarter we are predicting positive revenue growth."

Oracle customers are ready to go forward with a variety of projects, he added, but they are waiting for some positive signs from the economy before they proceed.

The Oracle AppsWorld Conference ends on Wednesday. More details can be found at

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