Redwood Shores, Calif. (June 9, 2003) -- Business software giant Oracle has made an unsolicited bid to buy rival enterprise resource planning software maker PeopleSoft.

The deal was announced just days after PeopleSoft unveiled plans to buy middle market ERP vendor J.D. Edwards. Oracle said that, if its offer is approved, it would review whether to support the Edwards acquisition.

Oracle did not indicate any other plans for PeopleSoft, but one early press report of the deal said Oracle would not support future upgrades of PeopleSoft products and would try to migrate their users to Oracle products.

The deal has a potential trickle effect on the accounting profession. Oracle is the major investor in Internet-based business management software developer NetLedger, which is aggressively recruiting accountants to its channel.

In another shakeup in the ranks of the developers of ERP systems for very large businesses, Dutch-based Baan earlier this week was sold to an investment group that reportedly plans to merge it into another software company. Buying PeopleSoft would reunite Oracle chief executive Larry Ellison with Craig Conway, chief executive at PeopleSoft, who rose through the ranks at Oracle to become a sales vice president.

-- WebCPA staff

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