Reversal of Fortune

Oracle’s (NYSE:ORCL) annual revenue has been nearly flat for the last five years (2012-2016), staying around the $37 billion range. In many ways it was a stunning reversal of fortune for Oracle because the company doubled its revenues in the five years before that (2007-2011), moving from $17.9 billion to $35.6 billion. The growth of the infrastructure as a service segment in cloud computing completely transformed the IT industry, and Oracle learned a painful lesson.

Its strength in databases and its strong enterprise-focused IT infrastructure expertise helped it hold its ground, but Oracle knew it was on an unsustainable path in the long run. The relatively recent change of mind is indeed helping Oracle as the company races toward $10 billion in annual revenues from its software as a service segment.

Though the company keeps making public announcements about how it is going to be an irresistible force in the IaaS segment, the fact that it has less than $200 million in quarterly revenues to show for it makes it clear that the company has a mountain to climb despite having multimillion-dollar clients under its roof.

Oracle started late and now it needs plenty of time before before it can build

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