EU Gives Sun Acquisition The Green Light


The European Commission has just released a statement approving the long-delayed acquisition of Sun Microsystems by Oracle. The EC has concluded that the takeover will not damage competition in the European Economic Area (EEA).

The takeover was announced in April 2009, and put to a Sun shareholder vote on July 16th. Sixty-two percent voted in favour of the deal. The acquisition was approved by US competition regulators, but ran into difficulties when the European Commission issued its formal ‘statement of objections,’ in November. The Commission’s main point of concern, centered on the MySQL open source database, which creator Michael Widenius sold Sun for $1bn in 2008. The EC was concerned that the acquisition of the world’s leading open source database, by Oracle, the leading proprietary database vendor, would damage competition within the market.

The MySQL community had put together a 30,000-strong petition against the acquisition. However, now there is only the Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service and the Chinese Ministry of Commerce standing in the way of the takeover.

Oracle will host an all-day event at its headquarters in Redwood Shores, California, on January 27th, to “outline the strategy for the combined companies, product roadmaps, and how customers will benefit from having all components – hardware, operating system, database, middleware, and applications – engineered to work together.”

The event will be broadcast globally.

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