Oracle, Sun and the European Union
The European Union is very cautious and thorough. Approving the acquisition of Sun by Oracle is a lengthy process where all grievances are examined an judged. Michael Widenius, the “father” of MySQL has been very vocal about the future of MySQL (that he sold to Sun) in an Oracle environment, claiming that Oracle will simply let the product die to maintain the revenue level of the database market. The proof in the pudding, he says, is that Oracle has requested an extension (until January 27, 2010) to present its case in front of the EU commission. For the MySQL camp, it shows that Oracle is worried about the issue.
To me, it shows that Oracle was not prepared to be grilled on this by the EU commission and by its hair splitting approach to all issues. After all, MySQL was already in the hands of a private company (Sun), so what would be the difference?
I can understand that, for Monty Widenius and his cohort MySQL is an important issue. But is it so important when placed against 1) the global database market and heavyweights like IBM and Microsoft and 2) the strategic importance of all other products coming from Sun? Could we really believe that Oracle is so worried about the market gains of MySQL that it actually acquired Sun just to kill it?
The reality is that Oracle has much bigger fishes to fry as shown in the multiple papers written by John Rymer, Stefan Ried and myself on the subject of the Sun acquisition. I just assume that, having been burned once on this by the EU, Oracle is now cautiously preparing a very complete answer on the future of MySQL so that the very important strategic acquisition of Sun is not derailed by a peripheral issue like MySQL.
I would love to read your comments on this.