Oracle may drop PeopleSoft bid

By : |November 11, 2003 0




NEW YORK: Oracle Corp., said it may give up its hostile $7.3 billion bid for PeopleSoft Inc. if its target continues to offer refunds on software license fees under any takeover, The Wall Street Journal said on Tuesday.

Software maker Oracle asked the Delaware Court of Chancery to speed up action on an injunction against a programme under which PeopleSoft has been offering software customers refunds of between two and five times their licensing fees if any acquirer fails to meet certain conditions, according to the paper.

PeopleSoft has said the potential liability, under a revised version of the refund programme, was nearly $800 million at the end of the third quarter.

Last week, some PeopleSoft shareholders filed a motion in the same court seeking a preliminary injunction to block the revised programme.

In a filing on Monday, Oracle took issue with a provision of PeopleSoft’s revised offer under which the refunds would be triggered by a change in majority control of PeopleSoft’s board, whether the change is the result of an acquisition or a shareholder vote, the paper said.

Under the new programme, refunds of between two and five times a customer’s software licence fees will be triggered if PeopleSoft is acquired within two years, instead of one year under the original programme, and the buyer takes certain actions to reduce product support within four years, rather than two years.

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