Oracle Says Thomas Kurian, Who Oversaw the Company’s Cloud Efforts, Is Stepping Down
Oracle confirmed late Friday the departure of a top product executive from its ranks. Thomas Kurian, a 22-year veteran of the company who most recently served as president of Oracle’s product development, is stepping down from the company.
Kurian’s bio on Oracle’s corporate site credits him with overseeing Oracle’s transition to cloud-based enterprise software. Prior to Oracle, Kurian worked as a consultant at McKinsey & Co. Last week, Oracle’s stock stumbled after the company’s second-quarter earnings showed revenue from its cloud services came in below analyst expectations.
In a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Oracle said that Kurian notified the company that he was leaving to pursue other opportunities. “Kurian’s duties and responsibilities have been reassigned to other senior executives in Oracle’s development organization,” Oracle’s filing said.
The announcement comes a few weeks after several news organizations reported on a clash between Kurian and Oracle founder and executive chairman Larry Ellison. According to CNBC, Kurian took a leave of absence from Oracle earlier this month, notifying the company’s staff of his plans in an email. At the time, an Oracle spokesperson said the company expected Kurian to “return soon.”
Kurian has battled with Ellison over the role that cloud-based software will play in Oracle’s future. The two executives faced “growing strife” over the appropriate cloud strategy for Oracle, Bloomberg reported, with Kurian wanting Oracle to make “more of its software available to run on public clouds from chief rivals Amazon and Microsoft as a way to diversify from its own struggling infrastructure.” Ellison reportedly disagreed.
Oracle’s stock was little changed in aftermarket trading, declining 0.3% to $51.40. In official trading Friday before Kurian’s departure was announced, Oracle shares were down 0.3% at $51.56.