Oracle Picks up BEA for $8.5 Billion

If news days follow themes, then today's theme is acquisitions, as Oracle has announced their intent to buy BEA Systems, Inc. for $8.5 billion, the second billion-dollar acquisition of the day.

The deal, which was originally rejected by BEA's board, was brokered over the weekend by BEA's biggest shareholder, Carl Icahn, who noted that the most progress came during halftime of Sunday evening's Giants vs. Cowboys football game. Oracle had initially offered $17 per share, while BEA held out for $21; the deal was hammered out at $19.375 after other buyers failed to materialize. Analysts expect that the teaming of Oracle, known for it's database products, and BEA's "middleware" will make it a formidable presence in the business-management market, currently dominated by SAP.

The announcement comes on the heels of this morning's news that Sun will purchase popular database software MySQL — interestingly, a major competitor to Oracle, especially in the online database market.

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