Oracle's acquisition of Sun is now complete and, while Oracle plans to continue Sun's product roadmap more or less unchanged, there could be major upheavals in store for the partner channel.
These were among the messages from Nick Cock, senior director: product strategy for Sun/Oracle products, addressing a meeting of Sun customers yesterday.
Cock made much of the completeness of the new Oracle and Sun product line-up – which now extends across the stack to include applications, database, middleware, operating systems, servers and storage – and will be tightly integrated.
However, he dropped a bombshell for Sun's partners with the news that one of the newly-merged company's five strategies going forward is to move to a more direct sales model.
Predictably, this is being touted as a move to better service customers and to take away some of the "less value-added perspective of the business" from partners.
"The customer is the starting point – he will have a single point of contact, a single company to take responsibility for solutions," Cock says.
The other strategic steps the company is planning include focusing on a differentiated product line-up, optimising the supply chain, implementing an attractive support plan, and leveraging the company's more than 100 000 people.
In terms of supply chain optimisation, Cock explains that it will change from Sun's traditional push basis to a pull model. He says this will essentially remove inventory from the channel and, while it will push up deliery times, products will be delivered pre-configured and should require less implementation time.