Thursday, June 24, 2004

The New York Times > Business > Microsoft Tells Court It Won't Be a Rival to Oracle

The New York Times > Business > Microsoft Tells Court It Won't Be a Rival to Oracle "While Microsoft is not a litigant in the antitrust trial, the company's strategy in business software looms large in the government's case.
"It is not true we intend to move into the space," Mr. Burgum testified. "Enterprise software is about few customers, very high prices and long negotiations. Microsoft's strength is low prices, high volume, packaged software."
Mr. Burgum, who runs the Microsoft Business Solutions division, said Microsoft determined it would take "years and years and years" for the company to create products and train a sales force focused on the enterprise market. "That would be a formidable task that would take more money than Microsoft would be willing to commit," he said.
Mr. Burgum added that his division, which was formed by Microsoft's acquisition of Great Plains Software in 2001 and Navision in 2002, was still losing money.
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In the cross-examination of Mr. Burgum, Dan Wall, Oracle's lead lawyer, pointed to internal Microsoft documents in which company executives described their intent to sell Microsoft programs like Axapta to large corporations.
"They absolutely have designs on the large corporations," Mr. Wall said in an interview, referring to Microsoft's software strategy. Calling Mr. Burgum's direct testimony an "exercise in semantics," Mr. Wall said it was critical to look at Microsoft's intent to supply a "full solution stack," from the operating system to enterprise applications."
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