The company’s first commercially available software was a relational database management system (RDMS) called Oracle Version 2. The software was launched in 1979 and slowly started gaining attention. Within eight years, Oracle had released version 5.1 of the software and decided it was time to go public. By the end of the 80s, Oracle was a global business with more than 500 million U.S. dollars in revenue and, by 2016, Oracle’s annual revenue had increased to more than 37 billion U.S. dollars, while its reported net income stood at almost 10 billion U.S. dollars. The most recent version of the company's RDMS was Oracle 12c, launched in 2013, which was developed with a focus on cloud computing.
Other software products in the company’s extensive portfolio include the Oracle Beehive collaboration software; two operating systems, Oracle Solaris and Oracle Linux; a family of middleware software products called Oracle Fusion Middleware; as well as various business application suites. Examples of the latter include the Oracle Retail Suite, which helps retail companies manage merchandise, pricing, invoicing, and store operations, and the Oracle e-Business Suite, which provides companies with tools to manage manufacturing, financials, human resources, and customer relations (CRM).
Oracle’s main business segment remains that of software solutions, which generated approximately 29 billion U.S dollars in revenue in 2016 alone. However, the corporation has also been involved in the manufacture of hardware, ever since it acquired Sun Microsystems in 2010. Sun specialized in computers, computer components, computer software, and information technology services. Oracle also provides services, such as the Oracle Cloud Services and Oracle Academy, which assists with training in technology and computing skills in collaboration with governments and educational institutions.
With an estimated brand value of 26 billion U.S. dollars, Oracle is ranked among the top 20 most valuable brands in the world, between Amazon and HP. The company is also one of the top 30 largest companies in the world by market value. As of 2016, Larry Ellison, long considered to be the driving force behind Oracle’s success, was the thirdrichest person in the United States and the seventh richest in the world, with an estimated net worth of almost 44 billion U.S. dollars.