Third-party service provider Rimini Street is doing Oracle and SAP "a good favour" by stopping clients leaving their platforms, according to Rimini Street president Sebastian Grady.
Rimini Street has been a cat among the pigeons since launching its third-party maintenance and services for Oracle and SAP platforms in 2005 - and is locked in a legal saga with Oracle that has seen Rimini Street ordered to pay over $100m (£80m), with the case still rumbling on.
Despite the friction between the pair, Grady told CRN that Rimini Street is in fact helping Oracle keep clients that are having to consider leaving the vendor because of its high costs.
"Many of these companies, including the company I am at today, are looking for an exit strategy from Oracle," he said.
"Now that we're in the picture we might make the financial equation digestible so they don't have to look for an exit strategy, so in this case we're actually doing Oracle a good favour by keeping the account.
"We're finding this more and more, especially on the database side [and] you're seeing so many different options it's almost becoming commoditised. Customers are saying 'why am I paying all this money and what am I getting for it?'"
Rimini Street recently reported year-on-year revenue growth of 32 per cent to $129m for the three months ending 30 September 2016.
Revenue was up 67 per cent in Europe, paving the way for a new office in Sweden and an office expansion in the UK.
Grady attributed the growth partly to developments in the Oracle lawsuit which saw a jury find that Rimini Street did not "wilfully" infringe Oracle copyrights, adding that the European expansion was giving it more credibility with potential customers.
"I think there were a lot of customers on the sideline until we got a jury verdict in the lawsuit and actually paid the bill," he said. "I think that people feel a lot more comfortable now that, for the best part, it's behind us.
"You can't blame a prospective customer for thinking we're two guys and a dog in a garage, so when they come to our offices in Canary Wharf and see that we're a very professional company with first-class people, they see that there's a lot more behind the company."
While the war of words between the pair shows no signs of a truce, Grady extended an olive branch to Oracle and claims he wouldn't be against a formal partnership further down the line.
"Nobody likes to fight," he said. "If we could have a mutually beneficial relationship it would benefit both companies, but I think more importantly is if the customers see this combination of having Oracle being the licensee and Rimini Street provide the maintenance, that's going to rule the day."
Dale Vile, research director at Freeform Dynamics, explained that Rimini Street can provide a positive solution to customers who are running older versions of Oracle software, but that conflict starts to arise when Rimini Street goes poaching live clients.
"There are customers out there who for very good reason want to stay on old software, and the older your software gets the more Oracle are not interested and the cost side of things become a problem," he said.
"Where the tension comes is when Rimini Street is going into live, active accounts, not where they've frozen their environments, and they're trying to take maintenance anyway from Oracle that Oracle would actually quite like.
"I don't know if Oracle would ever admit to Rimini Street being of benefit, but in reality it probably is if you look at that first group of people [who have frozen their platforms]."
Oracle had not responded to CRN's requests for comment at the time of publication and SAP declined to comment.
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