SAP bows to the inevitable and shuts TomorrowNowby
It's perhaps the least unexpected occurrence of 2008 to date: SAP has decided to shut its TomorrowNow subsidiary, the third party support arm that was supposed to snatch business from Oracle but has resulted in a muli-million dollar law suit.
TomorrowNow, which provides support for Oracle's PeopleSoft and JD Edwards software operations, was acquired by rival SAP in 2005 in an effort to convert Oracle's customers to SAP software. In 2007, however, the company was at the centre of an ongoing legal action between the two enterprise giants when Oracle accused TomorrowNow of facilitating corporate espionage operations against Oracle.
TomorrowNow was accused of using customer information it obtained through its support options to access Oracle databases and steal support information. SAP has admitted that some "inappropriate" downloads had been performed, but the firm denied that it ever had access to any of its rival's intellectual property as a result of the actions.
SAP released a short statement on Monday confirming long-standing speculation that it will wind down TomorrowNow's operations between now and October. The company will help customers transfer to alternative products from other vendors. "Our goal is to assist our customers in transitioning to a new support provider, including Oracle, without a disruption to their support during the wind-down process," said TomorrowNow executive chairman Mark White.
The case is scheduled to go to trial in February 2010, and the two firms haven’t made any move toward resolving the suit in court-ordered settlement conferences. SAP has said it will pursue a vigorous defence against this lawsuit while Oracle is pressing for substantial financial penalties on SAP.
SAP recently lost another lawsuit when At the end of June supply chain software maker i2 Technologies announced won an $83 million cash payment from SAP to settle a patent infringement lawsuit.