Upping the ante in its fight against a hostile takeover bid, PeopleSoft Inc. announced late Tuesday it expanded its lawsuit against Oracle Corp. by filing an amendment to its compliant filed in June in a California Superior Court.
The amendment alleges “extensive new facts about Oracles managements ongoing acts of unfair trade practices, including its efforts to disrupt PeopleSofts customer relationships,” according to a statement by PeopleSoft.
PeopleSoft has been fending off an unwanted bid by Oracle since it announced its plans to acquire J.D. Edwards & Co. in early June.
The amended complaint claims new information regarding a campaign waged by Oracle, of Redwood Shores, Calif., to deliberately mislead PeopleSofts customers about Oracles plans to support PeopleSoft products.
The allegations likely stems from earlier comments by Larry Ellison, Oracles chairman and CEO, that he would purchase PeopleSoft, of Pleasanton, Calif., and then discontinue the product line. Ellison later retracted that statement, with Oracle making repeated statements that it would support PeopleSofts products longer than PeopleSoft would should it remain independent.
At the same time, in its amended suit, PeopleSoft claims that Oracle is deliberately interfering with J.D. Edwards customers. On July 18 PeopleSoft took over J.D. Edwards when it obtained 88 percent of J.D. Edwards outstanding stock. It expects to acquire the remaining shares by the end of this month.
With J.D. Edwards firmly in its camp, PeopleSoft also said it is consolidating the two companies claims against Oracle into a single lawsuit and plans to dismiss J.D. Edwards previously filed suits against Oracle, officials said.
Oracle officials said in a statement that it would be inappropriate to comment without having first seen PeopleSofts amended filing.
“It does not change our commitment to acquire PeopleSoft,” said Oracle spokesman Jim Finn, in the statement.
Oracle, for its part, is awaiting the results of a Department of Justice second request for information, signaling its potential intent to stop or amend the proposed merger with an antitrust suit.