Siebel speculators, take a chill pill

Several media outlets reporting that Oracle is about to buy Siebel Systems are way off track, according to software sage Rick Sherlund.

The Goldman Sachs securities analyst rained on the media's rumor mill parade Tuesday with a report outlining why Oracle, SAP or anyone else is unlikely to buy the struggling software firm anytime soon.

"We suspect that Tom Siebel and the Board believe they can turn (the company) around, having just put a new CEO in place," Sherlund said in his note. "If they wanted to sell the company, why undergo the management change and disruption of a restructuring and bother to hold a five-hour analyst meeting in New York on Thursday to talk about the strategy and vision of how they can turn this company around?"

Sherlund also said Siebel is unlikely sell itself to a private equity firm or distribute any of its $2 billion in cash to shareholders in the form of a buyback, as some shareholders are hoping.

Shares of Siebel have been seesawing since the Daily Deal reported last week that Oracle and Siebel recently discussed merging. Siebel's shares fell on Monday after a deal failed to materialize over the weekend, but were up again on Tuesday over renewed speculation.

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    Alorie Gilbert
    writes about software, spy chips and the high-tech workplace.
     

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