Oracle’s Larry Ellison talks cloud catch-up game with Salesforce.com

Oracle’s Larry Ellison talks cloud catch-up game with Salesforce.com

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Larry Ellison, Oracle

Oracle scored an much-needed win with its better-than-expected second quarter earnings report on Wednesday, fueled primarily by its three-tier cloud platform.

But the boasting during the subsequent quarterly conference call wasn’t limited to just results over the last three months.

Never one to shy away from calling out a competitor, Oracle chairman and chief technology officer Larry Ellison promised analysts and investors that not only would Oracle catch up with partner/rival Salesforce.com next year — but that it would eventually surpass the CRM giant.

Co-CEO Mark Hurd chuckled lightly, concurring that Oracle has a larger product portfolio, hinting this will help do the job.

Although Oracle has pushing its cloud strategy along over the last few years (after several years in development), the hardware and software titan kicked up commitment into high-gear and began racking up customers considerably in 2014.

In during the second fiscal quarter of 2015, Oracle’s Software-as-a-service (SaaS), Platform-as-a-service (PaaS) and Infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) revenue shot up by 45 percent year-over-year to $516 million.

By comparison, standard cloud and software revenues were up five percent to $7.3 billion and hardware only inched a point upward to $1.3 billion for the three-month period.

Ellison predicted in the Q2 report that new cloud bookings would exceed $250 million by the fourth quarter, crossing the “billion dollars mark” in the next fiscal year.

By comparison, Salesforce.com posted $1.38 billion for the third quarter of 2014. For fiscal 2015, the cloud company offered a revenue guidance range in November between $5.36 billion to $5.37 billion, up 32 percent from a year ago.

Hurd added cloud bookings grew at a rate of more than 140 percent during the quarter, boasting Oracle now has over 600 ERP Fusion Cloud customers, or “five-times more ERP customers than Workday.”

Regardless of the hyperbole, Oracle investors seem pleased for the time being. Shares were up by as much as five percent in after-hours trading.

Originally published on ZDNET.

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