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.
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.