Over the last few weeks and months, Oracle has laid off hundreds of employees at the Seattle office once viewed as the future of its cloud computing strategy, according to a report.
Business Insider reported last week that the Seattle layoffs affected 300 people and came as part of cuts across Oracle’s cloud teams said to involve as many as several thousand layoffs across the broader company. But the Seattle cuts are notable given the mission that group was assigned: to make Oracle relevant in cloud computing using talent from Cloud City.
An Oracle representative did not respond to a request for comment.
The report pointed to infighting between the Seattle group and a similar group based in the Bay Area working on cloud infrastructure, which jibes with reports that suggested new Google Cloud CEO Thomas Kurian left Oracle last year after 22 years at the company following disputes with Oracle co-founder and chief technology officer Larry Ellison over the right direction for Oracle’s cloud efforts. For years now, Oracle has said it wants to compete with the likes of Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, and Google in infrastructure cloud computing, but it hasn’t made any recognizable progress toward that goal and decided last year to make it more difficult to assess the financial performance of its cloud efforts.
While Oracle has been able to justify throwing big salaries at Seattle-based cloud talent, it apparently can’t afford to make the massive investments in server hardware needed to match the computing power of the Big Three. Business Insider suggested that Oracle’s Bay Area and Seattle cloud teams find themselves competing for hardware resources that can take weeks, if not months, to arrive: in March Oracle reported spending 14 percent less on hardware in its third fiscal quarter.