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Oracle's Ellison talks of big plans for cloud computing

Oracle's Virtual Iron acquisition demonstrated the company's commitment to virtualization, and now the company has shown it's ready to take on cloud computing.

CEO Larry Ellison unveiled the company's plans for cloud computing during a feisty earnings call in which he boasted of wins over most of Oracle's competitors.

Those plans start with being number one in on demand software. Ellison said that Oracle can compete with Salesforce in CRM and it can deliver products in other areas. "We are code complete on Fusion applications," he said. "Customers are trying them out now and we'll start delivering them later this year."

He added that Salesforce may be number one in SaaS but it's "only a billion dollar company." Oracle's revenues for the most recent year were $23.3 billion.

Ellison claimed that private cloud services enable Oracle to win the biggest enterprise customers. "It's a single tenancy on demand model, with a computer in your data center, highly secure, high performance, but we provide all of the upgrade services and we administer the applications," he said. "That's proven to be a significant differentiator between us and Salesforce and what is allowing us to win virtually every large-scale deal."

In its press release, Oracle reported "on demand" revenues. The company earned $779 million from on demand services in 2009 (its fiscal year ends on May 31), up from $694 million in the previous year, an increase of 12 percent.

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