Oracle Says Antitrust Case 'Confusing'

The U.S. Justice Department's lawsuit to block Oracle Corp.'s $7.7-billion takeover bid of PeopleSoft Inc. hinges on a "confusing" view of the market for business software that overlooks evidence of competition, Oracle said in court documents filed on Tuesday. Redwood Shores, California-based Oracle said the government case, which goes to trial on Monday in San Francisco, "begins with the most confusing, meaningless market definition ever pursued in a government merger challenge." The company made its comments in pre-trial documents filed with U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker.

The Justice Department filed suit in February to block the deal after concluding Oracle's hostile takeover bid would crimp competition in the market for software that helps big businesses manage finances and human resources. A department spokeswoman would not comment directly on Oracle's comments Tuesday but said the department planned to make public its pretrial briefing late Tuesday or Wednesday. The lawsuit by the Justice Department, backed by 10 U.S. states, is likely to center on whether Oracle's purchase of PeopleSoft will cut competition and drive prices higher in the market for so-called enterprise software.

News source: Reuters

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