HP and Oracle to tie platforms

After announcing their e-services alliance in August, Hewlitt-Packard Company and Oracle Corp. have now enhanced their relationship by planning to jointly develop and deliver Oracle Internet solutions on the HP platform, according to the companies.

As part of the alliance, Oracle will run internal business systems, such as e-mail, on HP systems. Oracle will also make HP-UX a platform for all of Oracle’s e-business software applications and HP will use, and will co-sell, Oracle’s Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software suite.

An alliance such as this one is something that end-users have been waiting for, according to one Canadian analyst.

“Our research would indicate that, amongst medium and large businesses, a lot of them (end-users) are looking for simpler Internet and e-business solutions,” said Joe Greene, director of telecom and Internet research at International Data Corp. (IDC) Canada Ltd. in Toronto. “And many of them have said that they would like to have a simplified platform to grow with. This could help end-users in their adoption of e-business solutions.”

Dave Rumer, director of e-business solutions at Oracle Canada, said the alliance between the two companies was a natural step.

“It’s very logical that with the large number of

joint clients that we have that Oracle works with Hewlett Packard, and the HP/UX and will be integrated into all of Oracle’s e-business software development environments,” he explained. “As well the HP/UX servers will be deployed in Oracle’s data center, as well as being an integral part of our Business OnLine offering.”

Greene thinks this is a good way for Oracle to get more exposure.

“I guess this is just sort of a sign of the times that a company like Oracle, who is coming at it from a software perspective, a database perspective, is looking for partners to get its products to market,” Greene said. “And by utilizing other vendors, partnerships and alliances, they can potentially increase their market coverage.”

For HP, the agreement will help the firm with its focus on e-services, according to Lynn Anderson, Canadian marketing manager, Hewlitt-Packard Canada.

“We believe that e-services will be integral in driving the next major evolution in computing,” Anderson said.

Greene said this is a good way for HP to increase its line of e-commerce services and products.

“From HP’s perspective, of course, being a hardware vendor, they are looking for partners and software suppliers — well known software suppliers, which Oracle is — to enhance their e-commerce offerings,” he said. “It’s just another example of what the Internet is doing to the market. You know — enemies in the morning, and partners in the afternoon kind of idea.”

But the focus is also on the benefits that will be extended to customers and Anderson said the integration of Oracle8i and HP’s e-speak will be one of the more prominent benefits, because “it’s going to make these technologies available through our e-speak development community

as well as the Oracle technology network,” she said.

Greene believes the benefit for end-users is the effect this will have on their budgets.

He said most of the money being spent by end-users is spent on services that would integrate software and platforms. So the fact that it is already integrated “lets the end-user save money on the services side of things,” said Greene.