Oracles inappropriate pricing slammed by Gartner

28 March 2002 Analysts at the Gartner Group have urged clients to check their Oracle database licence charges amid concerns that maverick sales staff may have imposed higher fees on some customers.

Gartner said that “highly inappropriate” fees were being charged by sales teams in a misguided attempt to boost revenues. For the past four quarters, revenues from Oracle’s database technology business have fallen at a rate of between 1% and 17% year-over-year.

Tactics include limiting a customer to either processor-based or named-user pricing, depending on which is more expensive; trying to pre-sell far more licences than the customer will ever use; and charging enterprises for extra named users for data sourced from an Oracle application database into a data warehouse.

Gartner’s warning comes a week after Meta Group analysts also slammed Oracle’s ‘multiplexing’ licence model. Oracle’s attempts to expand its definition of multiplexing to include batch feeds from non-Oracle applications into Oracle databases could cost some customers more than $2 million (€2.3m) in extra fees, says Meta. It is urging customers to take Oracle to court rather than pay up.

“The use of aggressive sales tactics by Oracle is not unprecedented,” concludes Gartner, which is also advising customers to seek legal and purchasing advice about any extra charges demanded.

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Ben Rossi

Ben was Vitesse Media's editorial director, leading content creation and editorial strategy across all Vitesse products, including its market-leading B2B and consumer magazines, websites, research and...

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