Mark Hurd is joining Oracle as president and a member of the board of directors, while Charles Phillips, who held those titles with the Redwood Shores, Calif.-based company, has resigned.
It's hard to say which development is more surprising: that Hurd, recently ousted as Hewlett-Packard's CEO following an investigation into sexual harassment (ruled unfounded), would select a job so quickly, or that it would be at Oracle, a company he bitterly competed against at HP.
"Mark did a brilliant job at HP and I expect he'll do even better at Oracle," said Oracle CEO Larry Ellison, in a statement. "There is no executive in the IT world with more relevant experience than Mark. Oracle's future is engineering complete and integrated hardware and software systems for the enterprise. Mark pioneered the integration of hardware with software when Teradata was a part of NCR."
Oracle still has another president, Safra Catz, who said Hurd is an "outstanding executive and a proven winner." She added, "I look forward to working with him for years to come. As Oracle continues to grow we need people experienced in operating a $100 billion business."
In a statement, Hurd made mention of battling IBM, but didn't mention his former employer HP. "I believe Oracle's strategy of combining software with hardware will enable Oracle to beat IBM in both enterprise servers and storage," Hurd said in the statement. "Exadata is just the beginning. We have some exciting new systems we are going to announce later this month at Oracle OpenWorld. I'm excited to be a part of the most innovative technology team in the IT industry."
Meanwhile, Ellison said Phillips asked to transition out of the company last December, according to the Oracle statement.
"I asked him to stay on through the Sun integration which has gone well. We will miss his talent and leadership, but I respect his decision," Ellison said in a statement. "Charles has evolved our field culture toward a more customer-centric organization and improved our top line consistency through a period of tremendous change and growth."
In a statement, Phillips said it was an honor to work with Catz and the "thousands of Oracle employees around the world who are committed to delivering high quality products and services to customers, and to be a part of one of the most innovative companies on the planet."