Oracle Signals Healthcare Push With Cerner Acquisition

Oracle is following some of its software industry cohorts into the healthcare space. It has confirmed its intention to acquire Cerner Corp. for around $30 billion. Given Microsoft's buyout of its telemedicine partner Nuance, and other, similar moves from notable software players, analysts are wondering if Oracle's deal will be the one that bursts the software-into-healthcare dam. Cerner is a savvy choice to aid a healthcare pivot: the company, which provides software to streamline medical record access and analysis, hit $5.5 billion in 2020 revenue and has already amassed around $4.3 billion in the first three quarters of 2021.

Larry Ellison, Oracle's Co-Founder and Chief Technology Officer, said, “With this acquisition, Oracle’s corporate mission expands to assume the responsibility to provide our overworked medical professionals with a new generation of easier-to-use digital tools that enable access to information via a hands-free voice interface to secure cloud applications." In what is effectively the richest deal in Oracle's long streak of software acquisitions, it will shell out $95 a share in cash to pick up Cerner for an equity value of $28.3 billion.

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Oracle's notoriety for stringing together acquisitions in quick succession has the industry rapt with attention as to its next scheme. One previous flurry of cloud-focused buyouts came to a head with the purchase of NetSuite. Despite having given little weight to its imminent rise, the success of cloud software, particularly for Salesforce, put Oracle in course-correction mode with that and other significant cloud-tech-boosting deals.