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April 24, 1997updated 05 Sep 2016 12:51pm


By CBR Staff Writer

Now Informix Software Inc’s wearing the hard hat that each of the database companies seem to doff in turn, chief executive Phil White’s setting about the organization with a vengence. Blinded by science – its Universal Server that is – the company took its eyes off the ball and expects to make report a loss for its first financial quarter. In a retrenching move White expects to can people, products and facilities. In a letter posted on the Informix home page he says duplication across the sales and marketing organizations will be removed; technologies that produce less revenue than their expense will be scaled back (we’re not told whether that means Universal Server itself!); offices will be closed; and employees who are not pulling their load… will be asked to leave. We assume that doesn’t include White himself. The company has already combined its formerly separate US sales, channels and partner groups into a single organization under VP North American sales Martin Brauns. Published reports say VP America sales Ron Alvarez is leaving. Enterprise services, including training, consulting and an advanced technology group are being poured into the sales organization under the charge of VP worldwide field operations Ken Coulter. Former Illustra VP and lately general manager of data warehouse business development Bruce Golden is leaving and responsibility for industry marketing, data warehousing business development, and VARs has been handed to VP enterprise solutions Steve Sommer. VP product management and development Mike Saranga gets additional responsibility for customer service and product marketing. VP business development Jeff Hudson will focus on Universal Server business development strategy. White suggests readers call him with questions or concerns. Informix has already been hit with a slew of class-action suites charging it with it with making misleading statements about its operations and prospects. Informix promises to make public details of the restructuring plan at the same time as it releases its first quarter earnings statement later this month. It says a date for that has still not been set. Meantime, software-watchers on Wall Street passed on the lyrics to an anonymous ditty popularly attributed to Oracle, written at Informix’ expense and sung to the tune of American Pie which was doing the round last week.

A long, long time ago

Phil can still remember how

That software used to make him smile

And he thought he had the chance

To knock Oracle from its stance

And maybe he’d be Larry for a while.

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But February made him shiver

With every deal he didn’t deliver

Bad news was on the doorstep

His developers made a misstep!

And I can’t remember if I cried

When I read about his Q1 slide

But something touched me deep inside

The day Informix died



Bye-bye, Phil White, you poor guy

Drove his server to the market

But the market was dry

And them good old boys were codin’ Java and C

Singin’ this’ll be the last check I see This’ll be the last check I see

Did you read the market downgrades

And do you have faith in DataBlades

If the market tells you so

Do you believe in XPS Can NewEra save your dev tools mess

And can you teach your reps to confess

Well, I know that you are just a louse

‘Cause I saw you drive to Larry’s house

You’d lost your Portland crew

Man, all you could do was sue!

You were a desperate chief exec

Who found his strategy was a wreck

Bet you’ll soon be bouncin’ checks

The day Informix died

I started singin’


Bye-bye, Phil White, you poor guy

Drove his server to the market

But the market was dry

And them good old boys were codin’ Java and C

Singin’ this’ll be the last check I see

This’ll be the last check I see. á

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