OGC renegotiates Oracle licensing deal

The government may have opened the floodgates for large users of Oracle software to renegotiate their contract terms.

The government may have opened the floodgates for large users of Oracle software to renegotiate their contract terms.

 

The Office of Government Commerce (OGC) has renegotiated a public-sector contract it signed with Oracle last February, and both central and local government departments will be able to enjoy greater discounts and more flexibility in use as a result.

 

The contract covers the use of the Oracle 9i database and the Oracle 9i Application Server. Previously, licences were charged to the public sector only on a "named user" basis. But now, the "per processor" formula (subject to a minimum of 500 processors) is open to the public sector, which should make using Oracle software cheaper for a number of organisations.

 

Oracle has also agreed to bundle a number of training services into the deal, and the minimum number of users for those that prefer the "named user" price model has fallen from 500 to 300.

 

The government signed the original February deal to allow public-sector organisations to enjoy the same Oracle discounts as commercial firms under Oracle’s Enterprise Licence Agreement (ELA) model. The new contract also sees the discounts for public ELAs being increased, although these figures remain confidential.

 

Hugh Barrett, chief executive of OGCbuying.solutions, the OGC commercial trading arm managing the Oracle contract, said the move demonstrated how the buying power of the public sector could deliver benefits to the taxpayer.

 

The OGC is also in the process of renegotiating the government contract signed with Microsoft in spring 2002.

 

Ronan Miles, chairman of the Oracle Users Group, said the renegotiated contract could encourage larger firms to follow suit.

 

The OGC recently published a number of new guidelines for consultation, which aim to help the public sector negotiate better IT contracts and avoid potential technical and financial difficulties.

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