HP Denies Oracle's Cover-Up Accusation On Hurd Settlement

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Hewlett-Packard says it's willing to make public all of the previously sealed information from its June 14 lawsuit against Oracle, in which HP accused its former partner of breaching agreements to continue developing software for HP's Itanium-based server line.

In a Thursday court filing, a copy of which HP sent to CRN, HP denied Oracle's assertion that HP is trying to hide certain details of last month's lawsuit and said it's "more than willing" to reveal the redacted portions of its complaint. "There is not a single word in HP's complaint that HP is not willing -- indeed eager -- to make public," HP said in the filing.

HP's filing came in response to Oracle's June 29 filing, in which Oracle asked the court to reject HP's earlier request to seal certain documents and preserve the redacted versions of other documents.

Both HP and Oracle admit that the redactions in HP's June 14 lawsuit pertain to the confidential settlement agreement that HP and former CEO and president Mark Hurd signed in September. Under that agreement, HP dropped the lawsuit it filed against Hurd after he joined Oracle as co-president, while Hurd gave up the roughly $30 million in stock options he received in August in his HP severance package.

However, Oracle is still pressing HP to reveal the full details of its agreement with Hurd.

"In a legal filing today, HP said it is more than willing to make its complaint against Oracle public. But HP is not willing to make public the settlement agreement upon which the complaint is based. Oracle is not interested in withholding anything from the public. The complaint and the settlement agreement should be fully disclosed immediately," Oracle said Thursday in an emailed statement that was not attributed to a specific executive.

HP claims that the only reason it sought to conceal part of its June 14 lawsuit is that its settlement agreement with Hurd contains a provision that prevents the disclosure of its terms for any purpose.

"Therefore, of necessity, HP filed the motion to seal the public version of the complaint. In light of the great importance that Oracle and Hurd have previously placed on maintaining absolute confidentiality with respect to the Settlement Agreement, HP is surprised that Oracle's position is that HP should have done otherwise," HP wrote in its Thursday filing.

Both HP and Oracle declined to further comment on the Thursday filing.

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