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Jnan Dash

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Mark Hurd at Oracle

Clearly, Mark joining Oracle is good news for the future of Oracle

That is the big news this morning. Mark Hurd, former CEO of HP who resigned abruptly last month, has landed at Oracle as co-president replacing Charles Phillips.  Larry Ellison publicly defended him and said in a letter to the NY Times that this was a big mistake by HP’s board to let Mark Hurd go.

Clearly, Mark joining Oracle is good news for the future of Oracle.  He proved to be a very effective executive at HP over the last five years. Under his watch, HP made the largest acquisition (EDS). Mark is operationally a very effective executive and Oracle will benefit greatly from that experience. I think he may be groomed to become Oracle’s CEO when Larry is ready to leave that role. Given Oracle’s move into hardware and storage (besides its traditional software business), an executive like Mark Hurd would be the most appropriate to provide leadership. He will also continue the aggressive acquisition streak of Oracle. Rumor has it that Oracle is likely going to acquire Netezza and may even go after EMC.

Larry has always admired the HP culture and management style, which he has mentioned to me personally during my years with him. Mark Hurd may be the most seasoned executive to take the role in Oracle’s history, given his two previous jobs at NCR and HP. His stints at NCR and Teradata prepare him well for looking at the Data Warehouse and BI business. He was pushing HP more into software during his 5 years. He hired Randy Mott from Walmart as his CIO and together they were pushing for NeoView, a product to compete against Teradata on price-performance.

Leaving behind all the soap opera aspects (scandals, etc.), Oracle made a great management hire with Mark Hurd.  Wall Street is reacting very positively to this news.

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Jnan Dash is Senior Advisor at EZShield Inc., Advisor at ScaleDB and Board Member at Compassites Software Solutions. He has lived in Silicon Valley since 1979. Formerly he was the Chief Strategy Officer (Consulting) at Curl Inc., before which he spent ten years at Oracle Corporation and was the Group Vice President, Systems Architecture and Technology till 2002. He was responsible for setting Oracle's core database and application server product directions and interacted with customers worldwide in translating future needs to product plans. Before that he spent 16 years at IBM. He blogs at http://jnandash.ulitzer.com.