Sun Looks Ahead After $1B MySQL Deal

By Sean Michael Kerner | Feb 27, 2008 | Print this Page
http://www.enterprisenetworkingplanet.com/news/article.php/3730776/Sun-Looks-Ahead-After-1B-MySQL-Deal.htm

Sun's $1 billion bid to acquire privately held open source database developer MySQL is now a done deal with the official closing of the acquisition. Sun first announced the deal on Jan. 16.

"I'm pleased we were able to complete the transaction in record time which reflects the excitement and sense of urgency both groups felt in getting to market," Sun CEO and President Jonathan Schwartz said on a morning conference call.

Schwartz also announced the immediate global availability of Sun services and support for the full MySQL product. Schwartz argued that the biggest impediment to MySQL's success in the broad marketplace has been its inability to provide peace of mind to enterprises that want service and support.

"We can now deliver that peace of mine, and what we have announced today is that we have released enterprise service offerings to the planet that allows the largest institutions in the world to put MySQL into mission-critical carrier-grade deployments."

With the close of the acquisition, MySQL's former CEO Marten Mickos is now the senior vice president of the new database group in Sun's software division.

This new group will combine MySQL with Sun's current database teams, including PostgreSQL, Java DB and others. In his new role, Mickos will lead Sun's overall database strategy and business.

On the call, Schwartz repeated his view that the acquisition of MySQL was the most important deal in Sun's history. At only $1 billion, though, it's not the largest: In 2005 Sun acquired tape vendor StorageTek for $4.1 billion.

In response to a question about the relative importance of the StorageTek deal, Schwartz stuck by his assertion of MySQL as being tops.

"MySQL is such a profoundly important acquisition for us for a very basic reason," Schwartz said. "The customer base that MySQL brings to Sun measures in the millions if not the tens of millions."

"There are very few others companies on earth that have that capacity to create opportunity for Sun as we drive forward on the systems we're evolving," he said.

Schwartz also addressed a question about what potential acquisitions Sun may yet make in the open source space.

"MySQL was clearly the crown jewel of the open source marketplace. As far as we can see there are no higher value assets for us to be acquiring," Schwartz said.

He added that going forward, Sun expects what he referred to as "tuck in" acquisitions. Just two weeks ago Sun acquired desktop-virtualization vendor Innotek.

"There is a growing number of interesting open source companies, and we believe we're a natural home for a lot of them," Schwartz said. "We'll certainly be putting our balance sheet to work to make that the case."

Article courtesy of InternetNews.com