What is Oracle and where do its software, database, and cloud products stand today in relation to cloud technology and big data? Three prominent analysts – Mike Fauscette, chief research officer at G2 Crowd; Liz Forrester, vice president and primary analyst at Forrester; and Neil Ward-Dutton, co-founder and research director at MDW Advisors – talk with CXOTalk to place Oracle in focus. For more information see, https://www.cxotalk.com/episode/oracle-focus-industry-analysts-view Fauscette is the chief research officer at G2 Crowd, a platform and community where people can connect and share experiences about business software. Fauscette previously spent ten years as an executive and senior analyst at technology market research firm IDC, where he led worldwide business software research. He is also a published author, blogger, photographer and accomplished public speaker on emerging trends in business software, business modernization and customer experience strategies. Herbert focuses on the technology services industry, helping clients navigate this fast-changing market and maximize the business value of their technology investments. As a principal analyst, she helps clients understand the key dynamics in the enterprise application services market and make smart technology sourcing decisions. Specific topics of focus include SaaS, SAP and Oracle Services, and services for cloud and mobile. She also advises technology and technology services vendors on market dynamics, buyer demands, competitive landscape, and go-to-market. Ward-Dutton is MWD Advisors' co-founder and Research Director, and is one of Europe’s most experienced and high-profile IT industry analysts. His areas of expertise include business process management (BPM), enterprise architecture (EA), Cloud computing and digital strategy. He also acts as an advisor to large organizations across a range of sectors and industries, including leading technology vendors. From the transcript: What are you seeing in the market with respect to Oracle today? Liz Herbert: (00:05:52) Sure. One of the things we've seen is that, like you said, they're one of the largest technology suppliers out there, and sometimes that means they're not the fastest. They don't necessarily take risks the way that some smaller and more startup-type companies do. For example, it's well known that Oracle was a bit late to the overall cloud competition that we see looming large in today's applications market, as well as platforms and infrastructure. (00:06:17) That said, when they invest, they go big. One of the things that's been notable about Oracle is that, where they're jumping into a new area of customer demand, they're able to put a significant amount of investment behind it. In fact, there's something very unique about the company, which we haven't really talked much about yet, but because Larry Ellison owns such a substantial part of the overall company, they're able to take decisions in a way that many other public companies of their size would not be able to. Neil Ward-Dutton: (00:08:45) Now on the platform side of things, fundamentally, my view is that Oracle's strategy is kind of defensive, but that's not necessarily a bad thing, nor is it surprising. Its position and its strategy is fundamentally about realizing that the center of gravity for the foreseeable future for new investments is going to be cloud. It's all about being there when customers want them to be there, to kind of minimize opportunities for customers to go anywhere else, to make sure that they always have something that they can offer customers when customers go to town and want to do things. Mike Fauscette: (00:21:48) I think it's an interesting point to say that customers and business, in general, change. We know, and you hear people talk about digital transformation. We think about platforms, and we think about this new way technology plays in business. It's much more into a competitive differentiator, a competitive advantage. It's something that companies that jump ahead can really leapfrog competition by using technology and people in the right sort of combinations. (00:22:22) Fundamentally, the way that companies think of what they want from the technology has started to shift. Now there's the conservative middle that'll follow that isn't out on the edge yet. You think about companies like Oracle, Salesforce, and others that have to be able to work in that environment. They have a business they have to maintain and, at the same time, they want to start to help those customers shift, move in the directions, and have the things available that can help them do that.
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Oracle Chief Executive Officer Mark Hurd delivers his keynote, “The Cloud: Transformational. Innovative. Foundational” at Oracle OpenWorld 2017. During Oracle OpenWorld 2017, Mark Hurd opened up his keynote by examining the current state of the industry, highlighting a macroeconomic viewpoint in the B2B IT space. Focusing on the constant drive for revenue and minimal growth in B2B IT compared to consumer IT, Mark noted that since 2000, half of the companies on the Fortune 500 have gone. Recognizing the pressure from industry disruptors, Mark went on to reiterate revenue growth is a fundamental corporate objective. However, Mark also noted another key component of business success in 2017 is managing risk. Touching on recent cybersecurity breaches, Mark mentioned that the next security breach could be even bigger, and companies are at risk by being unpatched. On average, it takes about a year for patches to get integrated into systems, but Mark pointed out that with Oracle, patching is integrated into Oracle Cloud for quick distribution and implementation. Security isn’t the only benefit with Oracle Cloud, Mark Hurd went on to state, Oracle Cloud also offers optimized stacks with flexible scalability, a point that would be reaffirmed by customer appearances later in the keynote. Mark pointed out that with Cloud apps, the burden is on the industry rather than the customer. He noted other customer benefits, such as a significantly lower total cost of ownership and the capability to engineer innovative and emerging technology directly into cloud applications. At Oracle OpenWorld 2017, Oracle’s Larry Ellison announced the introduction of the world’s first autonomous database. Mark reiterated this is one of Oracle’s biggest announcements in the past five years. Defining Oracle’s objectives moving forward, Mark stated it’s not enough to have the best cloud apps, but that they have to work together as a suite; and Oracle has the most complete suite of Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS), and Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) applications on the market today. Following up on predictions from previous Oracle OpenWorld keynotes, Mark took a look at recent data surrounding adoption of cloud services and data centers provided by Cisco and IDC. Noting that current adoption rates are in-line with his 2025 predictions, Mark believes these rates will accelerate as the movement to the cloud is “an inevitable destination.” The latter half of the keynote focused on messages from Oracle Cloud customers, including companies like Bloom Energy, FedEx, and Gap. Another Oracle customer, Lyft, mentioned their “Ride for a Reason” program, sending a portion of ride proceeds resulting from conference activity to the American Red Cross in support of hurricane relief efforts. Mark was joined by Chris Wood from FedEx, who applauded Oracle Cloud’s reliability and scalability for his company’s global logistics processes. Other guests commended Oracle Cloud’s timely and accurate data delivery, including Randy Furr (CFO of Bloom Energy) and Gap Inc. CIO Paul Chapman. Wrapping up the keynote, Mark reiterated that companies are moving quickly and Oracle’s extensive cloud portfolio can help. Mark Hurd has been a keynote speaker at Oracle OpenWorld, the world's largest business and technology conference, since 2010. In his keynotes, Mark not only discusses company growth and the company’s latest innovations, he also analyzes industry trends and predicts how these will play out over the next several years. In addition to Oracle OpenWorld, Mark has delivered keynotes for other Oracle events, including Oracle CloudWorld, Modern Customer Experience, Oracle Industry Connect, and Modern Supply Chain Experience. As CEO of Oracle, Mark has championed Oracle Cloud as the path forward for enterprise computing. Since joining Oracle, Mark has revamped Oracle’s sales force, shifting the sale process to allow salespeople to become experts in their product categories. Mark has delivered keynotes for some of the industry’s top companies. He has also been a guest speaker for several Universities including University of Michigan's Ross School of Business, University of Texas at Austin McCombs School of Business, and Baylor University’s Hankamer School of Business and the McBride Center for International Business. Other events Mark has been a featured speaker include TEDxWakeForestU (an independently organized TED event), Web Summit, and NetSuite SuiteWorld. Mark has been named multiple times by Business 2.0 magazine as one of the 50 Who Matter. He was featured several times in Barron’s in the publication’s Best CEOs lists. In 2007, Mark was recognized by Fortune magazine as one of their 25 Most Powerful People in Business. Mark Hurd Resources: - Learn more about Oracle CEO Mark Hurd: https://markhurd.com/ - View Mark Hurd’s professional profile on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/markvhurd
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