Oracle President Mark Hurd Outlines Oracle Cloud Strategy

Oracle president Mark Hurd and Oracle executive vice president of product development Thomas Kurian recently hosted a conference call to provide an update on Oracle’s cloud strategy and recap of product-related developments.

In his opening remarks, Hurd recounted some of the highlights from its econd fiscal quarter, such as software engineered systems, and also pointed to the vertical businesses in particular. The industry-specific applications grew by more than 60%, with even higher growth in financial services, telecommunications, and retail.  The vertical approach is a big differentiator for Oracle because it opens the door to larger enterprise-wide infrastructure opportunities for the entire stack, he said. “It is a key part of our strategic thrust.”

Oracle is trying to do two things for customers - simplify their IT and power their innovation, said Hurd. "People want simplicity, and the tech industry has always preached it but frankly I am not sure we have always lived it," he said.  "We want to help our customers get out of the systems integration business," he added, so they can free up their dollars and resources to innovate in their core businesses and drive revenue.

Oracle's Commitment to the Cloud

Hurd emphasized Oracle’s commitment to the cloud and said that Oracle cloud adoption continues to grow aggressively with more than 10,000 customers and more than 25 million users worldwide. In addition, he noted, nine of the top 10 SaaS providers are powered by Oracle, and Oracle delivers services at all three layers of the cloud - platform as a service (PaaS), infrastructure as a service (IaaS), and software as a service (SaaS). Years of internal development at Oracle have been spent to modernize applications and middleware and build a new foundation to support modern cloud apps. “Think of our strategy as building best-of-breed components, end-to-end engineered systems, engineered systems at the core of our cloud.”

Three Recent Cloud Updates

According to Kurian, since OpenWorld, Oracle has updated its public cloud offerings in three very important ways.

First, in the public cloud, Oracle has new releases of all of its SaaS offerings, new release of its ERP SaaS, new releases of Sales and Marketing, new releases of Human Resources, new releases of Talent Management and new releases of Customer Service. Each of these includes fundamental new capabilities and advances in the individual areas, but they are also integrated together so people can use more of these pieces together.

Second, Oracle has also delivered its platform-as-a-service offerings, database-as-a-service and Java-as-a-service, and recently integrated those also with Fusion Applications. Kurian said there are customers using those to extend the functionality of its SaaS applications by using its platform-as-a-service products in combination with Oracle SaaS applications.

And third, Kurian said Oracle has delivered two new releases of its social products, its Social Relationship Management product and its Social Engagement and Monitoring product, and is getting good traction from customers using the Social Suite for social marketing and social listening.

Beyond that, he said Oracle is beta testing new platform-as-a-service offerings, such as Storage, Messaging, and others, and there will be announcements going forward on those services as they go into general availability.

“To net it out, every service that we offer for software-as-a-service, platform as a service, and Social has had new releases and new capability, and integration across the pieces that in turn allows us to offer both these capabilities on a global scale across many countries, and also offer customers the ability to mix and match these pieces together as they want to.”

New Data Centers

In addition, to support these services, Oracle has opened new data centers with support for these services in a variety of countries - not just in North America, but also two locations in Europe and two locations in Asia-Pacific. “This allows us to bring these public cloud capabilities to customers on a global basis even if those customers have concerns about data coming into North America.”

New Oracle Infrastructure-as-a-Service

Separate from the public cloud, Kurian also said Oracle had introduced Oracle Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) recently for customers that want to buy Oracle systems and power their own private cloud. “What Oracle IaaS is really designed to do is help customers build their own private clouds which run in their own data centers using Oracle’s engineered systems and to get three important pieces of value from them.” First, it lets them use engineered systems on a monthly subscription basis. Second, it gives them flexibility with capacity on demand. And third, IaaS also includes value added services to enable things like proactive monitoring, quarterly patches, and system checks to ensure reliability, security and performance.