Oracle Corp, building on a run of more than 65 acquisitions during the past five years, is looking to purchase semiconductor companies and makers of industry-specific software, Oracle CEO Larry Ellison said.
“You’re going to see us buying chip companies,” Ellison, 66, said on Thursday at Oracle’s annual meeting in San Francisco.
Acquiring chipmakers would further Oracle’s push into computer hardware, initiated in January with its purchase of Sun Microsystems Inc, a server manufacturer.
Ellison said he wanted to follow the approach of Apple Inc CEO Steve Jobs by owning more of the intellectual property that underpins computer chips.
Apple has bought semiconductor makers to help develop devices such as the iPad and iPhone.
Oracle already acquired some chip know-how from Sun, which makes servers based on its own chip design, Sparc, while also using personal-computer chips from Intel Corp and Advanced Micro Devices Inc.
Oracle may buy a semiconductor company with technology for servers, said Doug Freedman, an analyst at Gleacher & Co in San Francisco.
Potential targets include AMD, IBM Corp’s chip division and Nvidia Corp, he said.
“You’ve got to think it’s focused on enterprise hardware, on the server,” he said. “AMD jumps off the screen.”
Oracle also plans to buy more makers of software focused on certain industries, Ellison said.
By zeroing in on specific areas, the company aims to stand out from rivals such as SAP AG.
“We want to play in every important industry,” he said.
Oracle, based in Redwood City, California, is the world’s second-largest software company, which had US$23.6 billion in cash and short-term investments at the end of its fiscal first quarter.
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