Oracle's acquisitive left hand, non-acquisitive right hand...

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Timing as they say is everything. There was Mark Berrenchea, Oracle’s senior vice president of applications development, standing on stage in Amsterdam to boast of the company’s non-acquisitive nature and how unlike its rivals it built its products from scratch. Meanwhile over in the US, the company is contendedly announcing its second acquisition in the space of 48 hours.

Oracle is to buy NetForce, a private company whose EventNet software will help it push into the highly lucrative healthcare service market which is hotting up as the next big battleground between Oracle and IBM. The EventNet software enables companies to gather information about pharmaceutical and healthcare cases, confirm that it is complete and accurate, assess whether problems are likely to be the result of their products and generate the necessary regulatory reports.

The news followed an announcement on Tuesday that Oracle had acquired voice-software company Indicast, whose technology allows people to use voice to access Web information, e-mail and other corporate data. Oracle plans to build the voice software into its application server software, technology that runs Web site transactions and will offer the software as a hosted service via Oracle.com. With the software, companies can build voice-based Web portal sites which allow people to fetch information simply by making a phone call and speaking into the phone.

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