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Companies Must Grow To Survive In Spite Of Challenging Economy Says Oracle President Mark Hurd

2011-11-14

SALT LAKE CITY ---- Mark Hurd, the president of Oracle (NASDAQ:ORCL), addressed Utah executives in a candid Q-and-A discussion at The Utah Technology Council (UTC) Hall of Fame Celebration Nov. 4 at the Grand America Hotel in Salt Lake City. The annual event also inducted Stephen Jacobsen and Mark Fuller into its growing list of Hall of Fame honorees.

Hurd spoke to an audience of roughly 800, largely impromptu, as Oracle CEO Larry Ellison was too ill to attend.

“Companies need to grow in order to succeed,” he told Utah executives. “To do that, they need access to infrastructure, to investment, and most importantly to talent.”

Noting that IT budgets are rising at a mere one percent per year, Hurd said that to grow, companies must build entirely new IT infrastructures without additional budget. “Every company has great opportunities due to emerging technology, but is needing to innovate and grow in the face of greater challenges than ever before,” he remarked.

“People are the most important commodity. This is one of the reasons for Oracle’s significant presence here in Utah,” he said.

Hurd was asked his greatest surprises upon joining Oracle in late 2010, and his opinion of HP under its new and current leadership. In the candid discussion, Hurd noted he had known Oracle well as both a friend and competitor for numerous years prior to his appointment as president last year.

“There was really nothing at Oracle that surprised me,” he said. “However, every company, invariably, needs to face big surprises every month and every quarter, and their ability to respond is critical for them to succeed.”

About HP he noted, “If HP can focus most on what they do best, they will succeed. They should strive to become the ‘best HP’ they can possibly be, just as Oracle should continue to strive for the same set of goals--to be the strongest and best version of Oracle we can possibly be.”

“Our annual Hall of Fame celebration is the premier event for our technology industries,” said Richard R. Nelson, UTC founder and CEO. “We are extremely appreciative to benefit from memorable experiences, and this year’s Hall of Fame has been no exception, as we gained the opportunity to visit with one of the top executives from one of the world’s top companies as we join to celebrate the achievements of our two newest Hall of Fame inductees.”

The Annual Hall of Fame event honors individuals with Utah ties that have made global contributions to the information technology, life science and clean tech industries through new technology, innovation and leadership.

Mark Fuller

At the University of Utah, Mark Fuller, who was named one of Fast Company’s Most Creative People in 2010, married his passion for design with his fascination for engineering and physics. After earning a master’s degree in engineering and product design from Stanford University, Fuller worked for Disney, supervising the creation of over 300 special effects and water projects. In 1983 he co-launched WET, a firm dedicated to innovating new types of water features by fusing elegant design with uncommon science and engineering. Under his leadership, the company has grown to over 200 employees and has created landmark fountains worldwide.

Stephen Jacobsen

Stephen Jacobsen is one of the most renowned and prolific creators of animate systems in this, or any, generation. Jacobsen holds an MS in engineering from the University of Utah and a Ph.D. in engineering from MIT. Jacobsen and his teams have garnered more than 200 patents to date, with many more in process, through a rigorous creative process that combines the oft-disparate disciplines of engineering, science, art and business. The teams’ creations have broken new ground and stood the test of time. The Utah Arm, developed in the early 1980s, is still widely considered the world’s finest artificial limb, while robots developed at Sarcos for Disney and Honda over the past 30-plus years are still in active use. The exoskeleton developed at Sarcos and Raytheon was a significant inspiration for the Iron Man movie franchise.

This year’s Hall of Fame inductees join past recipients Stephen Aldous, Alan Ashton, David Bailey, Dale H. Ballard, Bruce Bastian, H. Raymond Bingham, Nolan Bushnell, Greg Butterfield, Edwin Catmull, James Clark, Gary L. Crocker, Bernard Daines, David Evans, Philo Farnsworth, Jim Kajiya, Alan Kay, Spencer Kirk, Michael O. Leavitt, Drew Major, Peter Meldrum, Raymond Noorda, Dinesh Patel, Shane Robison, Kevin Rollins, Mark Skolnick, James LeVoy Sorenson, David Spafford, Theodore H. Stanley, Thomas Stockham, Jr., Ivan Sutherland, Homer Warner and John Warnock.

Sponsors included: Adobe, Domo, Zions Bank, General Atlantic, LANDesk, Oracle, Utah Business, Xi3 Corporation, KPMG, Novell, Crocker Ventures, SolutionStream, and WET Design.

About Utah Technology Council

Utah’s premier professional association, the Utah Technology Council has grown 18 percent a year for the past eight years, becoming the essential business resource for High-Tech, Life Science and Clean-Tech companies seeking to achieve greater success. At its core, UTC exists to foster the GROWTH of the state’s 6,000 technology companies, ensure Utah develops the highest QUALITY WORKFORCE in the nation and attract an ever-increasing array of FUNDING. Members join UTC to share insights with industry peers, counsel with government and academic leaders, and receive help from professional service providers and funding resources.

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