Will Oracle’s Australian cloud crusade prove to be a misadventure?

Will Oracle’s Australian cloud crusade prove to be a misadventure?

Industry hopeful but remains wary of vendor’s chequered history

Oracle has recently launched its platform and infrastructure cloud offerings in Australia. But the question remains, can the global software giant make the transition and challenge the established cloud players?

Gartner research director, Michael Warrilow, told ARN that Oracle had strength in its cloud offerings and the company has made significant investments in staff and infrastructure.

“They are spending big money and they are poaching people from Amazon, and they have a lab up in Seattle where much of the engineering is happening," Warrilow said.

“There is a lot of potential and there is a lot of money being spent. It is a question of how successful will they be and are they too late?

“They have many years to catch up just to get into this race and billions of dollars that have to be spent. They are spending the money, how long they can afford to do that before the accountants start questioning the return [remains to be seen],” he said.

Michael Warrilow - Gartner research director
Michael Warrilow - Gartner research director

Microsoft and Google have good reason to have a multi-billion dollar investments in data centres that is underutilised, according to Warrilow, but Oracle doesn't have that, as much of its revenue still comes from on-premise.

“They have a claim in the PaaS [Platform-as-a-service] space; they may have some accounting differences in what they call PaaS as opposed to the rest of the world but database and middleware has been their bread and butter,” Warrilow said.

Coupled with this is the vendor’s chequered history in its approach to customer engagement. The company has a reputation for auditing its clients when licenses come up for renewal.

“That classic traditional Oracle sales strategy - you have to question whether that will be successful in the cloud where there is more competition and more freedom,” Warrilow added.

He said that, in many ways, Oracle needs to overcome itself before it can be successful in the cloud.

“[Oracle will] definitely have to reinvent their own go-to-market. Microsoft have done all the hard yards in that respect and it has taken many years to do that transformation. Oracle is going to have to do that to get the new opportunities," Warrilow said.

“They are not going to go out of business anytime soon because they have such an entrenched business, but as the move continues toward cloud, they need become more cloud friendly,” he said.

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Tags MicrosoftOracleAWSmichael warr larry ellison

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