Oracle’s view is simple: SaaS suites win in the long term.
Oracle reports its PaaS and IaaS revenue together, which makes understanding its IaaS growth difficult. FY16 to FY17 revenue increased from $0.9bn to $1.4bn, equivalent to 60% YoY growth. The company claims to have added 14,000 IaaS and PaaS customers to OCI since its inception, almost all of them existing customers of its licensed software. Oracle’s overall revenue in 2016 was $37bn, so IaaS and PaaS still represent a small slice of the pie.
The report has, of course, more detail on the portfolio, e.g.:
A challenge Oracle faced from the beginning was its tardiness to the market. Sure, it could copy and perhaps improve upon existing public cloud offerings, but it would have to do it faster than the rest of the market. AWS, for example, has over 70 services, so there is a lot of ground to cover. Over the past year, Oracle has released 50 services and features – starting from bare-metal compute and storage, the company has added virtual machines, databases, database clustering, load balancers, audit capability, compliance, monitoring, logging, authentication and new images. From a single datacenter in Phoenix, it has expanded to Ashburn, Virginia, and Frankfurt; it is targeting London for early 2018 and APAC further down the line. It has also released and open-sourced a new serverless capability called Fn and a Docker-native platform called Fn Flow for composing serverless applications. The company hopes to distinguish its serverless offering by making it cloud-agnostic, although Java is first among equals in terms of supported languages. Oracle realizes that its capability isn’t as broad as AWS’s, but its rate of development shows it can achieve a lot in a short amount of time.
In 451 Research’s Voice of the Enterprise: Hosting & Cloud Managed Services, Organizational Dynamics 2017 report, 44% of 515 respondents stated that they would pay a premium for an enhanced SLA on performance/uptime; 34% stated that they would pay a premium for enhanced customer support. The median premium for these enhancements was about 20%. Buyers see value in services way beyond just the basics. The challenge for Oracle is convincing customers that it offers the best capability for the best price – there are others in the market with stronger credentials and reputations. stronger credentials and reputations.
Source: Oracle stays the course on IaaS
Oracle all over that public kubernetes service.
“Licensing. Why’d it have to be licensing?”
Jon Hall, who always has good things to say about traditional IT Service Management butting up against Melinum IT, points out an all too common hassle with new ways of packaging and running IT: accounting for traditional licensing. Here, he points out a likely licensing counting problem with Docker-ized applications, e.g., with Oracle licensing when it comes to the recent, official Docker images with Oracle software in ’em:
But theres a serious gotcha here: as any Software Asset Manager could point out, these actions could have just cost the company a pretty staggering amount of money. How? By falling foul of Oracles notoriously complex licensing system.
Oracle licensing is bloody complex, and its entirely possible that a goalpost or two might have moved by the time you read this.
The Register closes out it’s reporting on the rumor that Oracle was considering buying Accenture:
…spokeswoman Deborah Hillinger has since denied that an acquisition will take place, claiming: “The Accenture rumour is completely untrue. Never even considered it.”
Meanwhile, Dennis covers the many reasons why the deal wouldn’t make sense in the first place. The margin argument is always a good, quick one:
…consultants are not normally selling software solutions, but are selling the bodies and expertise needed to make the chosen solution work, the second part of this model. When you look at how that translates into revenue and profit, it quickly becomes apparent that while the implementation contract may well be 5, 6 or even 10x the software cost, the margins are much smaller per dollar spent by customers. To give you a flavor of what this means, in its latest filing, Accenture recorded operating income of 13.7%. For its part, Oracle reported operating income of 32%. As you can readily see, there is no comparison between the two companies, despite the fact Accenture has been acquiring and developing its own software for solutions outside the ‘mainstream’ of solutions that Oracle sells.
We discussed this rumor on last week’s Software Defined Talk episode as well.
A bit of a jumbled article for general audiences
, but some more numbers of tech companies’ cash on hand and numbers around 2016 acquisitions:
The value of software deals in 2016 topped $115 billion for acquisitions closed or pending, according to data gathered by Bloomberg. That’s up about 19 percent from 2015.
Overall in 2016, the value of merger-and-acquisition business software deals totaled $117.6 billion.
That doesn’t include the blockbuster tech deal of the year: Microsoft paying $26 billion for LinkedIn. LinkedIn does not fit neatly into the category of business software because of its professional networking tools that are used by workers outside of business hours.
Tech companies have lots of cash abroad. If the Trump folks reduce the tax down to 10%, the theory is many companies would bring that cash “back home” and could use it to buy things, and likely pay our dividends and do share buy backs:
Oracle and Microsoft have more than 80 percent of their cash, near-term cash and short-term investments in foreign subsidiaries, according to recent filings.
Who knows? It’s all a bit of a lamp-post analysis, but, sure: ¯_(ツ)_/¯
Oracle claims the company isn’t closing the Santa Clara facility with this reduction in force. Instead, “Oracle is refocusing its Hardware Systems business, and for that reason, has decided to lay off certain of its employees in the Hardware Systems Division.”
Those hardware employees appear to have been Oracle’s failing SPARC hardware department staffers. In mid 2016, Oracle claimed its new SPARC S7 processor would be offered on Oracle Cloud. The cloud is Oracle’s new revenue hope since its new software licensing revenue plummeted by 20 percent in its last quarter ended December 15. At the same time, Oracle’s hardware revenue had fallen 13 percent.
As for Oracle, the enterprise software vendor wants to use Apiary’s technology set to make its existing API Integration Cloud more robust. Oracle’s API product focuses primarily on services that help companies monetize and analyze APIs. Apiary provides more of a front-end platform for designing, creating and governing APIs. From Natalie Gagliordi f at ZDnet
- $8.55M in funding, over three rounds
- Founded April, 2011.
Apigee was acquired, by Google, last year for $625m. Of course, they were public with (let’s hazard a guess) many, many more customers and revenue: $92.03m in FY2016, to be exact.
Back in September 2015, Carl Lehmann at 451 Research said they had 33 employees (up from 22 in Dec 2014) and estimated their revenue at $2-3m. Carl says, now, it’s “likely below $5m in annual revenue.”
What Apiary does
Apiary’s promise is to be quick and easy when it comes to managing the full life-cycle of API design. As their CEO, Jakub Nesetril, put it when I interviewed him in 2015:
It all starts with that first meeting when you’re thinking about building an API and you’re either kind of, you know, you’re inside meeting room ideating on a white board and then taking a photo of it and sending it to a co-worker, or summarizing it down into an email and sending it down to somebody else, saying hey, I just thought would could build something like this. That white board should be. And, if you do that it becomes, you know, we do a lot to try to make it super simple. We have a language that is like really, really simple for developers to write and we can write down a quick API in five minutes. It’s marked down, it’s like very organic, it’s very simple for developers.
What it creates for you, is creates this kind of common space, common language kind of when you talk about it that’s machine readable, human writable so it’s super simple but it’s also machine writable, and machine readable. The important aspect of it is that we take your white board, we take your … we build a language that we have API blue prints. It’s a… We take that API blueprint and we immediately create a API prototype, the moment you hit your first button. So, from day one when you’ve proposed your first API idea, your first resource you know, your first data structure. You have an API that’s sitting out there on the internet, somebody can query it and guess what, if they decide that the API is broken, that they would like to have a different resource, they would like to change the of a certain data structure, they would like add to it, whatever. They can go in, edit that out, click the save button and boom the API prototype is updated immediately.
Load in some enterprise governance and access controls, and you have something nice and useful. See him explaining more in this 2013 InfoQ interview.
Carl at 451 summarized the meat of what they do back in that 2015 report:
Apiary structures its API lifecycle management platform into five phases. The design phase includes the means to ensure API design consistency using a style guide, a collaborative editor and an approval process. The prototype phase includes productivity capabilities such as auto-generated code and a feedback loop for quality assurance. The implementation phase enables agile-inspired and test-driven development practices, helps deploy server code, and provides for framework integration. The delivery phase includes tools for automated documentation, offers code samples, guides the release of final client code, and offers SDKs. The feedback phase includes debugging, support and usage metrics.
The Money – grabbing part of the $3bn pie
Forrester threw out some API management market-sizing back in June of 2015 (there’s likely something more up-to-date behind their paywall):
We predict US companies alone will spend nearly $3 billion on API management over the next five years. Annual spend will quadruple by the end of the decade, from $140 million in 2014 to $660 million in 2020. International sales will take the global market over the billion dollar mark.
With Oracle’s foot-print in all of enterprise applications and IT (they own Java and share much of the JEE market with IBM), there’s likely some genuine synergies to be had. That is, Oracle could be in a position to boost Apiary sales way above what the tiny company could do on its own.
To be clear, as pointed out above, Apiary doesn’t do all that Apigee does. Apiary is just for the development/design time part of APIs, also providing documentation.
That’s helpful for sure, but I’d guess most of Forrester’s $3bn estimation is likely in actually running and managing APIs. And, in fact, it’s probably more realistic to put Apiary in the development tools/ALM TAM, which is probably in the low, single digit billions. That said, I’m guessing Forrester would put Apiary in their API management bucket; after all, it has “API” in it!
Once again, the key metric of new software license sales was off—falling 19% to $1.35 billion compared to last year, and missing analysts’ expectations of $1.44 billion.
On the other hand:
“Our cloud revenue will be larger than our new software license revenue next fiscal year, when the transition will be largely complete.”
“Our cloud applications goal is to be the world largest and most profitable SaaS company. We are growing our cloud business much faster than Salesforce.com, and we can beat them to the $10 billion mark, but it’s going to be close,” Ellison told analysts on the call.
Database-as-a-service, which basically runs a company’s database on a third party’s cloud, is a fast-growing category for Oracle, according to the company. In fact, Oracle co-CEO Mark Hurd said that business was up 700% year over year, hitting $100 million in quarterly revenue.
Also: sweet flip phone!