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Oracle’s Irish arm returns to profit, acquires $11.4bn in IP rights

Enterprise technology giant Oracle’s main Irish arm bounced back from a near €500 million loss last year as it acquired $11.4 billion in intellectual property rights from another group company by way of a promissory note.

Oracle EMEA Limited, which employs more than 1,400 people in Ireland, recorded a €504 million pretax profits for the year ending May 2019, reversing a €493.4 million loss a year earlier that arose on the back of a near €500 million impairment charge.

The company, whose parent is rumoured to be one of a number of tech companies seeking to acquire TikTok, recorded turnover of €7.4 billion, down 2 per cent on the €7.6 billion recorded in 2018.

The Irish subsidiary paid a tax charge of €81.6 million leaving a profit after tax of €422.4 million. Th shareholder’s deficit at the end of the reporting period was €293.5 million, as against €752 million in the prior year.

Distribution costs more than halved last year to €770 million while administration expenses were down 19.5 per cent to €756.6 million.

The Irish unit employed an average of 1,439 people last year with staff costs, including wages and salaries, totalling €127.9 million. More than 1,000 of Oracle’s EMEA Limited’s employees work in sales and marketing. with a further 200 in finance and admin, and 164 in manufacturing and software development.

The group said it invested €33.2 million in research and development (R&D) activities during the year, down slightly on the €36.5 million spend recorded in 2018.

Post the reporting period, Oracle EMEA Limited sold some IP rights to another group company for €198.3 million.

Staff at Oracle Ireland were told in March that the company was to cut as many as 1,300 jobs across Europe, with Dublin among the locations affected.

The lay-offs come after Oracle fell short of quarterly revenue estimates late last year as growth in its cloud services business failed to cover losses in its traditional licensing business.

Oracle has rapidly expanded its cloud business in recent years, remaking itself from a database supplier into one of the largest cloud-focused technology multinationals.

The company, which was founded by Larry EllisonEd Oates and Bob Milner in 1977, has a market cap of more than $180 billion. It recorded revenues of $39.5 billion last year.

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