5. Oracle, Salesforce Bury Hatchet, Form Partnership
Oracle and Salesforce.com unveiled a nine-year agreement in June that surprised many industry watchers, mainly because Oracle CEO Larry Ellison and Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff (pictured) have been butting heads in a low-intensity but noticeable fashion in recent years.
Under the agreement, Salesforce is standardizing on Oracle's database software, Linux operating system, Java middleware and Exadata Database Machine servers. Oracle, for its part, is integrating Salesforce.com's CRM and other cloud applications with Oracle Fusion HCM (human capital management) and Financial Cloud Software-as-a-Service applications.
Later, Ellison and Benioff held a press conference to talk about the deal, in which each tried to outdo the other with praise and politeness. Then at Dreamforce in November, Benioff told a room of reporters that this "détente" with Ellison was "going pretty well."