A story was released today in The Register that demonstrates the ugly side of the coin. A month ago Oracle purchased a company called "Virtual Iron" who were a lean and mean competitor to the VMware juggernaut and whose products were available in New Zealand. The usual fanfare was pushed out through the PR channels - "With the addition of Virtual Iron, Oracle expects to enable customers to more dynamically manage their server capacity and optimize their power consumption."
I can just see the warm and fuzzy messages going out through the channel ensuring that customers' investments were safe......and then Oracle pull the plug. OK so there are promises to consolidate the customers into their virtualisation solutions in the future but that'll take time and no doubt require a really scary upgrade.
Another set of IT users left high and dry on the sand bank of M&A!
This tale has a bigger impact on the industry than we think because if you are the person making the decision you have to consider the risk of committing to a smaller player in the market and their ability to support you in the future.
Sadly, if you follow this through to it's eventual conclusion you end back at....."Nobody got fired for buying IBM."....again!
Now let me just check has Oracle acquired another company recently........?