SAP claims 100 of Oracle's customers have defected

Can big software companies create new markets anymore?

Matt Asay Contributing Writer
Matt Asay is a veteran technology columnist who has written for CNET, ReadWrite, and other tech media. Asay has also held a variety of executive roles with leading mobile and big data software companies.
Matt Asay

It's a bit pathetic to watch proprietary behemoths slug it out over saturated markets. SAP just went on the offensive in one such skirmish, announcing that 100 of Oracle's Hyperion customers are buying SAP for performance management with the intention to replace Oracle. (As Josh Greenbaum notes, the real story here may not be the customer defections, but rather the fact that conservative SAP is taking the gloves off at all to smack Oracle around.)

This is fine, but I'd prefer to see press releases that announce that 100 net new customers were created through a differentiated product and licensing strategy. You know - the sort of thing that open source does.

Alas, Oracle's consolidation play suggests that the big enterprise software vendors struggle to see the market in terms other than zero sum. IBM is looking abroad to developing economies for growth, and surely Oracle and SAP are doing the same. But what about here in the US? Or Western Europe? Surely there are new markets to be created here, too?

Or would Oracle et al prefer that open-source vendors clean up on these emerging markets?