Breaking news: Oracle to buy Sun for $7.4B

Oracle's acquisition of Sun brings up some very interesting questions for customers and open source proponents

The AP is reporting that Oracle will buy Sun shares for $9.50 per share, 10 cents more than IBM's reported offer, which fell through. The deal is expected to close in this summer.

Oracle estimates that Sun will contribute more than $1.5 billion and $2 billion to Oracle's profits in the first two years, respectively.

This will be very interesting. I guess Oracle didn't have enough on their hands with integrating BEA's middleware suite! It'll be very interesting to see what Oracle does with Sun's hardware assets. I suspect that they'll sell those assets off. But I guess time will tell.

[ InfoWorld's Neil McAllister correctly predicted Oracle's Sun takeover. Find out why he thought the deal would make sense. | For full coverage of the Oracle-Sun deal, see InfoWorld's special report. ]

A few readers have begun to worry about the fate of MySQL. This deal will be a test case for the actual freedoms of users when an open source product gets acquired. Yes, there is an opportunity to fork the code if users aren't happy with the acquiring vendor's actions in the user community or with the product in question. But what's the customer value of a splintered community? And up against the resources of an Oracle, can MapleSyrup Inc., the leading providers of support for MySQL in Canada, really stand a chance? Methinks no. More to come...

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PS: I should state: "The postings on this site are my own and don't necessarily represent IBM's positions, strategies, or opinions."