After his surprise departure from Oracleearly last month, Ray Lane, the former second-in-command at the U.S. database, tools and applications vendor, has found himself a new role in the venture capital world.
Lane, previously Oracle's long-time president and chief operating officer, has joined Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB) as a general partner, the venture capitalist company announced Wednesday. KPCB has invested in leading IT outfits including America Online Inc. (AOL), Amazon.com Inc. and VeriSign Inc.
Many former leading lights in the IT industry have moved into the heady world of venture capital. One of Lane's new colleagues at KPCB is Thomas Jermoluk, the former chairman of ISP (Internet service provider) Excite@Home Inc.
Lane joined Oracle in 1992 as president of the vendor's U.S. operations, becoming the company's executive vice president and president of worldwide operations on his way to the number-two seat. He came to Oracle from the consulting world, where he was a senior partner with Booz.Allen and Hamilton.
Other companies on Lane's resume are Electronic Data Systems Corp. (EDS) and IBM Corp.
Playing second fiddle to Oracle's flamboyant Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Larry Ellison appeared to work well for Lane, at least from the outside. He was reported to have turned down the top job at Compaq Computer Corp. before the PC vendor hired Michael Capellas as its new CEO.
The reasons behind Lane's departure from Oracle remain unclear, but it appears that Ellison was taking over more and more of the day-to-day responsibilities for the company's operations -- a role Lane had previously filled. [See "Oracle President and COO Ray Lane Resigns," July 3.] Oracle has yet to appoint Lane's replacement.
Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, based in Menlo Park, California, can be reached at +1-650-233-2750 or via the Internet at http://www.kpcb.com/. Oracle, in Redwood Shores, California, can be reached at +1-650-506-7000 or via the Internet at http://www.oracle.com/.