In breaking news, the Justice Department has given up trying to block the hostile takeover of Pleasanton's PeopleSoft by Oracle, clearing the way for Oracle to begin negotiations with PeopleSoft over the share price. San Francisco U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker ruled against the DOJ on Sept. 9th, dealing defeat to critics of the merger who felt that it violated anti-trust statutes. While individual states could bring their own appeals, there has been no indication of immediate action to do so.
The Justice Department's decision came just hours after PeopleSoft's Board of Directors ousted Craig Conway, PeopleSoft CEO. Mr. Conway and Oracle CEO Larry Ellison (not the Larry Ellison who retrieved two Barry Bonds splash hits in his kayak - though this Larry Ellison certainly enjoys boating) have traded barbs in the past, and it is well known that there is no love lost between these Silicon Valley bigshots. Conway has described Ellison as a "sociopath," saying that the PeopleSoft takeover is equivalent to buying Conway's "beloved pet dog, just so [Ellison] can take him around back and shoot him..." Larry Ellison countered that if Conway and the hypothetical dog in question were standing next to each other and Ellison had one bullet, "Trust me, it wouldn't be for the dog."
PeopleSoft's board decided to bring founder David Duffield in as the new CEO. Duffield had been living in Tahoe enjoying semi-retirement. SFist thinks the move is largely to make nice with their new overlords from Redwood Shores, and the reinstatement of popular founder Duffield as CEO meant to boost morale among PeopleSoft employees, who are staring down the barrel of "job redundancy" when Oracle finally makes their move. Conway, on the other hand, is walking away with an estimated $50 to $60 million severance package.