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Oracle cuts jobs in "refocusing" of hardware systems business

Software giant to cut hundreds from its Santa Clara facility
Larry Ellison - Chairman, Oracle

Larry Ellison - Chairman, Oracle

Less than a year after it revealed plans to cut up to 300 members of its North American sales team, Oracle is once again slimming down its workforce, this time from its hardware systems business.

Oracle has reportedly laid off around 450 workers in Santa Clara, California, from its hardware systems division, but the company declined to comment on the effects of redundancies on local operations.

A report from San Francisco- based publication, The Mercury News, said that workers laid off included hardware and software developers, along with a handful of managers, technicians and administrative assistants.

“The Santa Clara facility is not closing as part of this reduction in force,” the company said in a statement. “Rather, Oracle is refocusing its hardware systems business and, for that reason, has decided to lay off certain of its employees in the hardware systems division.”

However, if sources cited by ZDNet are to be believed, the technology company's total layoff figure could be closer to 1800. While the company has not confirmed such numbers, it is clear that it is working to slim down its workforce in certain areas.

For its part, Oracle Australia has remained tight-lipped about whether the job cuts will be felt as far as Australia and New Zealand.

The reported layoffs reflect the company’s new direction in cloud, which is Oracle’s big bet for improving revenue since its new software licensing revenue dropped by 20 per cent in its last quarter ended December 15.

Likewise, the company's hardware revenue reportedly fell 13 per cent year-on-year during second 2017 fiscal quarter.

In the company’s most recent SPARC/Solaris roadmap, a proposed new version, Solaris 12, was replaced by Solaris and SPARC next.

Oracle's acquired Solaris and SPARC in 2009 when the company bought Sun Microsystems and has not had great success with the two offerings since.

The reports of fresh redundancies come as the company reveals its acquisition of application programming interface (API) solution provider, Apiary, for an undisclosed price.

Oracle announced on 19 January that it had signed an agreement to acquire Apiary, whose APIFlow solution provides the framework and tools for developing application programming interfaces that share enterprise services and data and help create cloud-based applications.

"Together, Oracle and Apiary will help companies thrive in the digital economy by comprehensively managing connectivity complexity and API proliferation," the company said in a statement.

The latest round of reported job cuts comes after the US Department of Labor filed a lawsuit against Oracle, alleging the company engaged in pay discrimination practices against female, African-American, and Asian employees.

Oracle responded to the charges saying that the complaint is, "politically motivated, based on false allegations, and wholly without merit".