Oracle CEO Mark Hurd appeared at SuiteWorld19 to highlight the continued success of Oracle’s 2016 acquisition of NetSuite. Hurd described the ongoing cloud computing digital transformation and called out the increasing capabilities of artificial intelligence for increased efficiency and security. This productivity gain was demonstrated through NetSuite’s transition to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure. Hurd first noted that engineers had indexed NetSuite’s database around 9,000 times over the past fifteen years, then announced that the first 24 hours of testing Oracle autonomous database had resulted in 6,000 index writes, optimizing the database through machine learning for performance gain. He encouraged the audience to think of the long-term implications for efficiency, saying, “That can continue to get better and better as the tools get better and better. So now imagine that rippling through our entire base.”
Hurd has contended that the NetSuite acquisition is part of Oracle’s strategy to continue to invest to maintain and extend its position in the cloud ERP applications market. Before it acquired NetSuite, Oracle was primarily known for serving the largest enterprises in the world with deeply-integrated database and software solutions built to handle thousands of employees creating and manipulating huge quantities of data every day. NetSuite’s cloud-first focus, on the other hand, made it the SaaS provider of choice for thousands of small and midsize businesses worldwide.
At last year’s SuiteWorld18, Hurd encapsulated the promise of the two combined companies when he said, “With the advent of the cloud, you now have opportunities for the smallest businesses in the world to get access to the exact same capabilities” as the world’s largest businesses. The combined operations of Oracle and Netsuite can now serve “virtually everybody” by providing a complete suite of cloud services solutions that run the gamut from ERP, HCM, supply chain management, Internet of Things, CRM, ecommerce, and more.
Spearheading the acquisition of NetSuite was only one of the latest successes in Mark Hurd’s decades of experience in the technology industry. He began his career at NCR Corporation and rose through its ranks, heading up the company’s data-warehousing subsidiary, Teradata, for three years before becoming president of the NCR in 2001 and CEO in 2002. Hurd went on to become the CEO of Hewlett-Packard in 2005, a role he held for five years. At HP, Hurd reversed years of declining stock prices and diminished market share, leading the company through 22 quarters of growth and producing triple-digit gains for shareholders. In recognition of his achievements, Fortune named him one of its 25 most powerful people in business in 2007, The San Francisco Chronicle named him its CEO of the Year in 2008, and Forbes ranked him among its Top Gun CEOs for 2009.
Oracle Executive Chairman and CTO Larry Ellison appointed Hurd as president of Oracle and as a member of the company’s board of directors in 2010. In 2014, Hurd became the chief executive officer of Oracle. As CEO, he has been both the leading proponent of Oracle’s move to the cloud and a key supporter of Oracle’s acquisition of NetSuite. Hurd has also driven the creation of the Oracle Class Of program, an sales training program designed for recent college graduates that has brought over 10,000 new hires to the company. He is also a regular guest at industry events and a keynote speaker at the annual Oracle OpenWorld conference.
Hurd earned his bachelor’s degree in business administration from Baylor University in 1979, where he received a scholarship to play on its tennis team and served as president of the Phi Delta Theta fraternity. He credits Baylor with teaching him “how to be an effective leader, the importance of building teams aligned to a common goal, and the value of being part of a community.” Hurd currently serves on Baylor University’s Board of Regents as Vice Chair and member of the Executive Committee. He is a major supporter of Baylor’s tennis program, and the university’s tennis complex was named the Hurd Tennis Center in 2009 in recognition of his contributions. In 2018, the Hurd family contributed the lead gift to Baylor's "Give Light" fundraising initiative, assisting in the creation of the Mark and Paula Hurd Welcome Center.