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January 5, 2005

Oracle extends deadline, chasing 90% of PeopleSoft shares

Oracle Corp has extended a deadline for a further two days because it has narrowly failed to secure the support of enough shares to complete its acquisition of PeopleSoft Inc.

By CBR Staff Writer

When the previous deadline expired, PeopleSoft stockholders had tendered 89.4% of the company’s shares, approximately 357.68 million shares, prompting Oracle to extend the deadline.

Having replaced four members of the PeopleSoft board with its own people, the company already has control of the company and once it reaches the 90% threshold it will be able to formally complete the acquisition.

Oracle aims to notify PeopleSoft staff about their employment status shortly, but there are also rumors of changes within the Oracle management structure. Reuters cites two city analysts who said that Ronald Wohl, Oracle’s executive vice president of applications development, has been replaced by John Wookey, a senior vice president responsible for financial and sales and marketing software.

Wohl is still with the company but his new position has not been confirmed. Given his focus on the Oracle application suite, it is possible he is being primed to take on a similar role within PeopleSoft.

The parallel position within PeopleSoft is in a state of flux, following the departure of executive vice president of products and technology Ram Gupta, who left in October 2004, just a couple of weeks after the company fired its CEO Craig Conway. Gupta’s immediate replacement was Stan Swete, a PeopleSoft veteran who came out of retirement to take on the role.

It was also reported that Michael Rocha, Oracle’s executive vice president of global support services, had been replaced by Juergen Rottler, who recently joined Oracle from Hewlett-Packard Co and was responsible for Oracle On Demand. Rocha was executive vice president of global support services, responsible for Oracle’s Worldwide Support Services, Oracle On Demand, Platform Technologies, and Global Information Technology.

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