July 30, 2002 9:45 AM PDT

Ellison: No funny business at Oracle

Oracle Chief Executive Larry Ellison vouched for his software company's financial results as mandated by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

With the electronic filing of Oracle's annual report late Monday, Ellison and Chief Financial Officer Jeff Henley faxed sworn statements that they stood behind the company's financial reports, a company representative said. Hard copies of the oaths were sent overnight to the SEC and are expected to be registered Tuesday.

Oracle executives are among the first from technology companies to deliver a sworn statement vouching for their financial results.

The SEC set Aug. 14 as the deadline for CEOs and CFOs to file a written statement under oath that a company's financial statements are correct to the best of their knowledge. The order applies to a company's most recent annual report and to quarterly reports, proxies and other documents filed later.

Executives from the largest companies, those with a market capitalization of $1.2 billion or more, have to take the oath, the SEC said in an order handed down June 27.

Oracle's sworn statement brings the total number of tech companies adhering to the SEC's order to five, according to the SEC's Web site. CEOs from Electronic Data Systems, Corning, Texas Instruments and Qualcomm have vouched for their results, joining the ranks of non-tech companies such as Federal Express and AMR.

Most technology companies, however, have yet to comply with the SEC order.

Separately, Oracle's annual report didn't reveal any big surprises. However, the company did say it had reversed revenue garnered from a controversial $95 million contract with the state of California. Oracle and the state reached a formal agreement to cancel the contract last week. The company didn't reveal how much revenue was reversed.

The company also said the California contract flap may hurt its sales to government, but maintained that it had not done anything improper. "Other government agencies may be hesitant to enter into an enterprise contract or other types of contracts with us for some period of time, and the negative publicity regarding this controversial contract may harm our reputation and adversely impact our business," the company said.

 

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