Oracle ANZ sees cloud gain the upper hand

Oracle Australia and New Zealand is hurtling headlong into a 'fundamental shift' in its business model, with the company's cloud services portfolio gaining the upper hand in its regional product revenue mix.

The past year has seen Oracle Australia and New Zealand's cloud services portfolio overtake its on-premises business in terms of revenue, according to Oracle Australia and New Zealand regional managing director Tim Ebbeck.

On Tuesday, Ebbeck said that although Oracle ANZ has been undergoing a period of internal transformation since he stepped into his role in December 2013, it has also seen a "fundamental shift" in its business model.

"It's absolutely clear to me that midway through last year ... we started earning more revenue from our applications business from our cloud, or SaaS [software-as-a-service]-based business, than we did from our on-premise business," said Ebbeck. "It's not that our on-premise business has completely died, it's just that we're doing exceptionally well in the SaaS portfolio at the moment."

In December, Oracle's global second-quarter earnings result highlighted that revenue surged across its burgeoning cloud portfolio with SaaS, platform-as-a-service (PaaS), and infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) revenue up 45 percent year over year, to $516 million.

Meanwhile, in June last year, the company's annual result for fiscal year 2014 revealed that its SaaS and PaaS subscriptions jumped by 25 percent to $322 million during the fourth quarter of FY14, while IaaS subscription increased by 13 percent, to $128 million.

"Oracle is now the second-largest SaaS company in the world," said Oracle CEO Larry Ellison in a statement at the time.

In a bid to keep up with the rapid growth of its SaaS business, the company's Asia-Pacific operations will be taking on an additional 1,000 sales roles over the coming months, according to Ebbeck.

Oracle's Australian operations will receive around 150 of the new roles, increasing the company's local sales force by around a third.

"In the context of our business today, that's actually a very large percentage of our sales population," said Ebbeck.

According to Ebbeck, the new roles will be dedicated specifically to Oracle's local cloud-based offering, which he suggested will be the driver of a fundamental transformation for the company -- just five years after it became a fully fledged hardware player following its $7.4 billion deal to acquire Sun Systems.

"We're not just going to keep playing a change game here," said Ebbeck. "We're actually going to transform our business and our market. So for us, that's a very big step to reinvest even further into the world of cloud."