Oracle vs. SAP: Phillips, Zepecki on deck; In search of Apotheker

Oracle continues to try and subpoena HP CEO Leo Apotheker in its TomorrowNow lawsuit against SAP. In the meantime, Charles Phillips, former co-president at Oracle, and SAP executive John Zepecki, will testify with Larry Ellison waiting in the wings.
Written by Larry Dignan, Contributor

The Oracle vs. SAP lawsuit over TomorrowNow is starting to pick up with some big name execs on tap with live testimony.

Of course, the big question revolving around the trials revolves around whether new Hewlett-Packard CEO Leo Apotheker would testify. Apotheker used to be the CEO of SAP.

According to sources close to the situation, Apotheker was on a schedule to testify via video that was two years old on Thursday. However, Oracle is trying to serve Apotheker, sources say, and that move nixes video testimony.

On Wednesday, Oracle said that it hasn't been able to subpoena Apotheker in the trial. Oracle spokeswoman Deborah Hellinger said in a statement:

"Hewlett Packard has refused to accept service of a subpoena requiring Mr. Apotheker to testify about his role in SAP's illegal conduct. Mr. Apotheker started work for HP on Monday, but it now appears that the HP Board of Directors has decided to keep him away from HP's headquarters and outside the court's jurisdiction. We will continue to try to serve him."

HP reiterated a previous statement that Oracle is out to harass Apotheker. HP said:

Oracle had ample opportunity to question Leo during his sworn deposition in October 2008 and chose not to include him as a live trial witness until he was named CEO of HP.  Given Leo’s limited knowledge of and role in the matter, Oracle’s last-minute effort to require him to appear live at trial is no more than an effort to harass him and interfere with his duties and responsibilities as HP’s CEO."

While Apotheker won't be on tap, there should be some interesting live testimony on deck.

On Thursday, former Oracle co-president Charles Phillips will testify. John Zepecki, senior vice president and general manager at SAP, will also testify. Oracle lawyer David Boies will do the direct of Zepecki.

Meanwhile, Oracle CEO Larry Ellison is also expected to testify in upcoming days. Sources said that Ellison is likely to testify on Friday, according to a witness list. However, the situation is fluid and Ellison isn't confirmed as a lock for this week. In other words, Ellison's testimony could bleed over into next week as developments warrant.

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