Oracle increases offer, sues PeopleSoft

Oracle increases offer, sues PeopleSoft

Oracle has bumped up its unsolicited offer to buy rival PeopleSoft from $US5.1 billion to about $US6.3 billion, while at the same time announcing that it was filing suit against PeopleSoft, its board of directors and J.D. Edwards & Co. for their efforts to stave off the acquisition.

"Oracle remains committed to acquiring PeopleSoft and will not be deterred by management's maneuvers to maintain control of a company they do not own," Oracle chairman and chief executive officer, Larry Ellison, said.

Oracle said that it was filing the suit in response to PeopleSoft and J.D. Edwards' "collective efforts to eliminate PeopleSoft shareholders' ability to accept Oracle's tender offer."

Oracle also claimed to have spoken with holders of a majority of PeopleSoft shares and said they have indicated prices for which they would tender their shares. As a result, Oracle is increasing its all-cash offer to $US19.50 per share, or about $US6.3 billion.

Oracle chief financial officer, Jeff Henley, said that the company expects a majority of PeopleSoft shareholders to contact the board immediately and "demand the opportunity to accept the offer."

PeopleSoft representatives could not immediately be reached for comment.

Oracle announced on June 6 that it was making its initial $US5.1 billion bid to buy PeopleSoft, just days after the enterprise software provider announced it was acquiring J.D. Edwards. Both PeopleSoft and Denver, Colorado-based J.D. Edwards have revolted against the takeover, and each company filed suits against Oracle last week claiming unfair business practices and interference with customer relationships.

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