Last week, Oracle chief Larry Ellison told thousands of Oracle Open World attendees: “the SAP HANA in-memory machine is like, really small” and “you know, that’s a little bit smaller than what we offer.” As a result of these careless comments, records were set straight, brains were fried and, yes, SAP released the hounds.
I think SAP’s swift and severe reaction to Ellison’s remarks is justified. Simply put, if Ellison hadn’t said what he said, SAP wouldn’t have unleashed a wave of blogs, case studies and videos on the #OOW Twitter stream designed to remind those who care that SAP’s in-memory computing offering is by no means “really small”.
For the record, SAP developed a 100TB HANA system with IBM which is available today. Want real business benefits? Try this on for size. Or this. Or even this. SAP also ran a full page ad in The Wall Street Journal (pictured) that says: “Apparently, Oracle Needs to Fact-Check Their Fact-Checkers.”
Some think this latest spat between SAP and Oracle is a waste of time, makes SAP look bad and/or doesn’t offer any real value to customers. Some went so far as to suggest that boundaries were crossed because the #OOW Twitter stream was (gasp!) “hijacked.”
Let’s be clear: False statements aimed directly at SAP were made by a very public figure during a very public event. Is now really the best time to be discussing the finer points of Twitter etiquette?
The popular image SAP has projected as being a nice company where nice people come to work is true. Employees respect each other, the environment and its customers. These are major reasons why SAP was ranked the 24th most valuable brand in the world in 2011, ahead of Nike and Amazon. And now with the “warm, good vibes” SAP HANA is projecting, I guess it’s not hard to see why Oracle likes talking about us.
But please, Larry, next time get your facts straight. Because, as the late, great Bill Bixby once said: “Don’t make me angry. You wouldn’t like me when I’m angry.”