PeopleSoft calls Oracle’s board nominees ‘biased’

PeopleSoft Inc. has responded to Oracle Corp.’s announcement Friday that it may nominate five individuals to PeopleSoft’s board of directors and call for the expansion of the board to nine members.

The nominations and board expansion, which Oracle said it will only attempt if PeopleSoft Director Michael Maples is not put up for election at the company’s annual shareholder meeting, are the latest twist in Oracle’s hostile take-over attempt of the company.

“We believe that (Oracle CEO) Larry Ellison’s attempt to gain control of PeopleSoft’s Board of Directors is solely to advance Oracle’s agenda and is not in the best interests of PeopleSoft’s stockholders,” said the statement, which was issued Saturday.

“We strongly believe that Ellison’s hand-picked, paid nominees are biased and would have irreconcilable conflicts of interest if elected to PeopleSoft’s board. Each nominee is receiving cash compensation and has signed an agreement with Oracle. We believe their ability to be independent is seriously compromised,” it said.

Oracle wasn’t available Saturday to repond to the charges.

Oracle’s nominees are Duke Bristow, economist at the UCLA Anderson School of Management; Richard Clemmer, president of Venture Capital Tech LLC and former CEO of Inc.; Roger Noall, former senior executive vice-president and chief administrative officer of KeyCorp; Laurence Paul, managing principal of Laurel Crown Capital LLC, and Artur Raviv, professor of finance at Kellogg Graduate School of Management, Northwestern University.

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