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Oracle debuts Support Rewards programme to accelerate enterprise cloud migrations

Software giant offers financial incentives to longstanding on-premise software customers that opt to move more of their workloads to its cloud platform

Oracle is rolling out an incentive programme to help customers pick up the pace of their cloud migrations. It will reward enterprises that agree to move their workloads to its public cloud by cutting their on-premise software licensing support bills.

By taking part in the Oracle Support Rewards Programme, customers will receive “at least” a 25 cent (18p) reduction in their Oracle Technology Licence support bills for every dollar they spend on moving workloads to the Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI) environment.

The rewards for participants in Oracle Unlimited Licence Agreements (ULA) will be marginally higher, equating to a 33 cent (24p) reduction in the Oracle Technology Licence support bills for every dollar they spend on OCI deployments.

“This means that a ULA customer with an Oracle technology licence support bill of $500,000 could eliminate that bill entirely by migrating $1.5m of workloads to OCI,” said the company in a statement.

It said some companies could have “100% of their Oracle support fees reimbursed” in time by migrating a “handful of additional workloads” to OCI.

During a press briefing to discuss the programme, Ross Brown, vice-president of cloud go-to-market at Oracle, said access to the rewards programme will be granted to customers as they enter new or renewed contracts with the firm, and those that do so imminently should start reaping the financial benefits by the final quarter of 2021.

“Really it will be October-November before customers will start seeing the benefit of this and be able to write it off their bills and bring it down, but the intent here is if you’re able to move a significant amount of workloads into OCI early, you’ll accrue those support credits pretty rapidly to be able to completely offset your on-premise licensing,” said Brown.

When asked if there are any particular groups or types of Oracle customers that he thinks will benefit most from the programme, Brown pointed to those with a particularly high concentration of Oracle database, Java and Linux workloads.

“So the financial sector, healthcare, manufacturing and the whole discrete and process manufacturing world – we have a heavy footprint in hospitality and retail too,” he said.

“We’ve never really disclosed externally how much of our installed base is in that licensing business, but if we converted half of our installed base, we’d be talking about tens and tens of billions of dollars of OCI revenue, which would put us on the size of [Microsoft] Azure in a pretty quick order.

“We’re looking at this as an opportunity for us to be able to accelerate the movement of Oracle workloads over to OCI.”

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According to Oracle chairman and CTO Larry Ellison, that acceleration will serve to reinforce OCI’s position as the company’s fastest-growing business unit.

“We built a unique cloud infrastructure platform that customers love both because it runs mission-critical workloads and general-purpose workloads,” he said.

“We want more customers to take advantage of the world’s best cloud infrastructure. Oracle Support Rewards gives customers an easy way to simultaneously reduce their software support spend and increase the speed of their cloud adoption.”

Oracle Support Rewards is the latest in a series of revamps the firm has made in recent years to its licensing and support programmes to accommodate the consumption-based pricing models for cloud technologies.

These changes are proof of the company’s commitment to meeting the needs of its customers, said Dave McCarthy, vice-president of cloud and edge infrastructure services at market watcher IDC.

“Oracle is building differentiation in its cloud infrastructure services by staying laser-focused on the unique needs of its customers,” said McCarthy.  “Oracle Support Rewards, combined with flexible and transparent pricing, are essential in attracting new business and accelerating adoption of OCI.”

Multinational consumer credit monitoring service provider Experian is among a number of Oracle customers to have trialled the rewards programme, with the firm’s global chief enterprise architect, Mervyn Lally, citing the scheme as a means of accelerating its ongoing move to the cloud.

“As a leader in data and analytics, providing the best customer experience is extremely important to Experian,” he said. “We work with Oracle for many of our core systems on-premise, from call centre data analysis to financial reporting.

“As we continue to adopt cloud-based solutions, Oracle Support Rewards makes it much easier for us to choose Oracle Cloud for the future of these systems. We believe that working with Oracle will allow us to further enhance our data processing and analytics capabilities in the cloud and help the millions of consumers and businesses we serve with our innovative solutions.”

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