Eat ... Or Be Eaten

Software mogul Larry Ellison makes a hostile bid for a rival firm--and predicts that other tech giants will follow his lead

In a tech industry in which news seems to trudge to the same dreary drumbeat--a relentless sales downturn, profits stagnant at best, venture capitalists with their wallets shut tight--at least Larry Ellison can still come up with a surprise. The founder of Oracle--one of the world's richest men, with company stock worth more than $17 billion--spent last week pushing a hostile bid to take over rival business-software firm PeopleSoft for a lowball price of $16 a share--about 50¢ less than the market value of the stock. Neither analysts nor competitors seemed sure whether to take him seriously. "Larry's just having some...

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