Coincidentally, the acquisitions of the last two companies I worked at both closed this week. The first is Sun Microsystems where I worked from 1995 to 2008 and which was purchased by Oracle. The second is Lombardi which I left at the end of last summer and which was acquired by IBM.
Two very different acquisitions. One a Silicon Valley trailblazer whose acquisition took 9 torturous months to close, the other a star in the focused field of business process management which closed in less than six weeks. One company on the way up, one an icon on the way down.
While I wish the employees of both the best of luck, I particularly mourn the loss of Sun. It was an amazing company to have worked at. I joined the month that Java was introduced and rode it through its dot.com dominance and then down the other side. Even when its economic dominance waned, its willingness to take risk such as its refocusing on open source made it a fascinating place to be. The tech industry will be a less interesting place now that it is gone.
I take heart in the fact that the Sun diaspora now outweighs those still employed there. Sun alums can be found across the industry at companies big and small around the world (in fact there is a hearty band of us here at Dell). While there is no more Sun “the company” there are thousands of bits of it scattered throughout the high-tech landscape.
Aloha Stanford University Network, 1982-2010
Pau for now…