A bad week for the big boys

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Last week saw a slew of negative coverage on what were previously seen as unassailable market leaders in the IT and finance industries.

Firstly, the unmissably vitriolic resignation of a Goldman Sachs director who stated that his erstwhile employers offloaded poor value investments to their “muppet” customers.

Next, Oracle’s latest financial results came under repeated scrutiny as analysts noticed that the revenue increases where down to gouging their existing customer base rather than selling new product to new customers.

The same was true for SAP, accused of less than transparent pricing as it went “elephant hunting” looking for large deals.

Even the almighty Apple’s new iPad launch came in for some less-than-valedictory coverage, Google was slammed for not paying its Android developers and Groupon was given three months to get honest.

The common theme across the Goldman, Oracle and SAP stories is that traditional market leaders  are having difficulty keeping the revenue growth up from new business, and are being driven to more desparate ways to make their numbers. A sure sign of the end of a software company is when maintenance revenues exceed licence revenues, and both Oracle and SAP are heading in that direction.

Time for a new breed of cloud computing vendors to take over, maybe?

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