Wow -- Oracle is 30 years old and has 68,000 employees. This Oracle Magazine article is a useful recap and snapshot (although it accentuates the positive, naturally).
The founding of Oracle. In 1977 Larry Ellison, together with Bob Miner and Ed Oates, founded Software Development Laboratories (later to be renamed Oracle) to undertake contract development work. After reading a paper by Codd in the IBM Journal of Research and Development, they set to work, seizing the opportunity to develop the first commercial SQL relational database. They called their database "Oracle" after the code name of a CIA-funded project they had worked on together. The first version was never released.