Oracle moves to buy BEA

Oracle has set its sites on acquiring BEA Systems.

The database giant has sent a letter to BEA's Board of Directors proposing to buy all shares of BEA Stock, for $17 a share, or about $6.7 billion. BEA has thus far not responded to the offer.

Although mostly known for supplying enterprise-class database systems, Oracle has branched out in recent years to provide middleware and enterprise applications. In order to fill out its own product offerings, the company has purchased PeopleSoft, Siebel Systems and Hyperion, among others.

"Where possible, [Oracle's customers] want us to provide integration off-the-shelf now," Oracle president Charles Phillips told GCN yesterday, while talking about the company's acquisition strategy. "They are used to buying packaged applications but now they want to buy packaged integrations. So we're trying to reduce the labor content around that."

BEA Systems built its business selling application server software and associated services, although it has moved into the broader market of selling enterprise infrastructure software suites, including those that can support Service Oriented Architecture initiatives.

The Marine Corps, for instance, use BEA's portal software for its program to acclimatize exiting Marines to civilian life. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives also used the portal software for internal communications.

BEA's WebLogic Server 8.1 earned Evaluation Assurance Level 2 Common Criteria Certification from the National Information Assurance Partnership, making it suitable for use on secure Defense systems.

About the Author

Joab Jackson is the senior technology editor for Government Computer News.

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