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ORACLE BEA - BEA Gives Icahn a Hall Pass to the Holy of Holies

They've signed an NDA and much could depend on his reaction

(November 9, 2007) - In an unusual move, BEA says it's giving activist stockholder Carl Icahn confidential information that it can't give other people 'cause it's, well, confidential and is supposed to prove to him that the company is worth more than the $17 a share ($6.7 billion) that Oracle offered for it.

They've signed an NDA and much could depend on his reaction. He could find the cupboard bare.

BEA's board claims the company is worth $21 a share, some $8.2 billion.

Icahn wants BEA sold. He also wanted more from Oracle but is still ticked that BEA blew off negotiations with Oracle.

He currently owns 13.2% BEA, more than anybody else, and is threatening a proxy fight to overturn the board.

In a statement aimed at rebutting Icahn's accusations of last week, BEA CEO Alfred Chuang said, "We also want to dispel any speculation that we would engage in 'scorched earth' transactions to entrench ourselves at shareholders' expense or discourage a fully valued acquisition of the company."

BEA claims to be exploring a possible sale.

On November 15 BEA reports its third quarter, and at some point around then it's supposed to put all its delinquent financial reports of the last year or so on the table, an event that should improve Wall Street's visibility into its actual worth. BEA hasn't filed with the SEC in almost 17 months because of an internal backdating investigation.

More Stories By Maureen O'Gara

Maureen O'Gara the most read technology reporter for the past 20 years, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. She is the publisher of famous "Billygrams" and the editor-in-chief of "Client/Server News" for more than a decade. One of the most respected technology reporters in the business, Maureen can be reached by email at maureen(at)sys-con.com or paperboy(at)g2news.com, and by phone at 516 759-7025. Twitter: @MaureenOGara

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Oracle News Desk 11/09/07 09:53:40 AM EST

In an unusual move, BEA says it's giving activist stockholder Carl Icahn confidential information that it can't give other people 'cause it's, well, confidential and is supposed to prove to him that the company is worth more than the $17 a share ($6.7 billion) that Oracle offered for it. They've signed an NDA and much could depend on his reaction. He could find the cupboard bare. BEA's board claims the company is worth $21 a share, some $8.2 billion. Icahn wants BEA sold. He also wanted more from Oracle but is still ticked that BEA blew off negotiations with Oracle. He currently owns 13.2% BEA, more than anybody else, and is threatening a proxy fight to overturn the board.

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