Oracle Expands Insurance Industry Presence With Skywire Acquisition


The acquisition of Skywire for an undisclosed sum, combined with its pending acquisition of AdminServer, a supplier of insurance policy administration applications, will help Oracle assemble a complete software suite for the insurance industry, the vendor said. Along with applications specific for the insurance industry, Oracle can add its database, middleware and general business applications to the mix.

Skywire Software develops applications for managing insurance policy life cycles, such as creating and rating insurance policies, as well as document management business applications. The company has 1,450 insurance industry customers, Oracle said, while Oracle has more than 1,000.

"Insurance is a strategic industry for Oracle with growth focused on integrated packaged applications," Oracle president Charles Phillips said in a statement about the acquisition. "Insurance applications such as Skywire Software's for insurance policy life-cycle management help insurers navigate an increasingly complex business environment."

Skywire's document management applications will be used to expand Oracle's content management software portfolio. Oracle expects to complete the Skywire acquisition sometime in the second half of the year.

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While Oracle's acquisitions of major software vendors like PeopleSoft and BEA Systems have generated the most headlines, the company has steadily built a stable of vertical industry applications through acquisition of such companies as Retek (retail), SPL WorldGroup (utilities), and Portal Software (telecommunications billing).

Oracle also announced Monday that it is creating a health sciences global business unit to accelerate sales of Oracle software to pharmaceutical, biotechnology, healthcare and medical device companies. The unit will place particular emphasis on software for managing clinical trials for new drugs and medical products. The vendor's product lineup includes Oracle Clinical, Oracle Adverse Event Reporting System, Oracle Life Sciences Data Hub and Siebel Clinical Trial Management System applications. Oracle executive Neil de Crescenzo has been named senior vice president and general manager for the new business unit.