Oracle's claim for damages in its software theft case against SAP has been cut by $500m after the judge ruled to exclude evidence on potential loss of profits.
The claim is now for $1.66bn, which is substantially less than the $4bn that Oracle chief executive Larry Ellison on Monday pegged the value of the software downloaded illegally by now-defunct SAP subsidiary TomorrowNow in 2007.
Judge Phyllis Hamilton ruled that Oracle cannot claim damages for additional software it might have been able to sell to customers that it lost to TomorrowNow.
The ruling has given SAP hope of reducing the claim even further in the trial in Oakland, California, according to US reports.
"We are confident that, when the jury hears our case presentation, the outcome of the case will reflect the actual damages the limited actions of TomorrowNow had upon Oracle," SAP said in a statement.
Oracle can still claim for profits it lost as a direct result of the theft, and it can still ask for the money SAP would have had to pay if it licensed the software from Oracle legally, according to IDG News Service.
But, SAP says it should only be liable for the profits Oracle lost as a direct result of the theft, not for the hypothetical license.
The trial, in its second week, is set to continue on Friday after a two-day recess, and is expected to conclude by the end of November.