$1 Billion Damages? Moving into Commercial Banking? What Else?
Reuters reported that Oracle (ORCL) will seek approximately $1 billion USD in damages against SAP AG. This estimate is related to the TomorrowNow litigation that ORCL has brought against SAP. This sound bite from the article is particularly interesting:
"Oracle speculates wildly about the amount of its damages 'claim' in this discovery report, even though more than a year after this case was filed, Oracle still refuses to identify with any precision the nature or amount of its alleged harm or even to provide the theory on which its damage claim is based."
Damage claims must be proved for a court to award them. ORCL will need to show how it was harmed by the transfer of its intellectual property to TomorrowNow. To that end, I'm a little skeptical of claims in the hundreds of millions of dollars or more. Granted, ORCL may ask for punitive damages in addition to actual damages and that could cause the total to really escalate. But, from what I've seen (and that is very limited so far), a large claim could be tough to defend.
In a different matter, Bank Technology News reported that SAP is readying its products for a major push on North American banks. In this story, a major Canadian bank company is dropping a cool $100 million to have SAP replace its core banking applications. This has been a vertical SAP has had success with globally with the very noticeable exception being North America. This will be interesting to watch as US banks have different reporting and regulatory environments/needs than banks in other countries. We should also watch a significant number of competing vertical solutions that may include (and my memory is probably a bit dated here): Fiserv, Hogan, i-Bank, Systematics, Metavante and others. Plus, Indian outsourcers, IBM and EDS have big stakes in this area and I doubt they will just cede it to SAP without a fight.