A little more than a month after taking a leave from Oracle for health-related reasons, the company’s co-CEO has died.
The Lowdown: His departure from Oracle in September was somewhat of a mystery, as no details of his health concerns were disclosed. Likewise, the company hasn’t yet provided any details around the circumstances of his death today.
The Details: Hurd joined Redwood City, California-based Oracle in 2010 as president after resigning from Hewlett-Packard in the wake of a sexual harassment investigation. In 2014, he became Oracle’s co-CEO, alongside Safra Catz, after Larry Ellison – now Oracle’s chairman and CTO – stepped down from the position.
The Impact: According to CRN, a source close to Hurd at the time of his medical leave said that Ellison “is going to have to think through how [to] replace Mark and move forward. Mark was leading the sales charge at Oracle. This leaves a big sales void.”
Background: At the beginning of the year, Hurd shared ambitions of Oracle dominating the SaaS market and overtaking rivals Microsoft, Salesforce.com, and IBM in that arena. The company has been vigorously pursuing a cloud-first strategy through aggressive channel programs, organic sales expansion, partnerships, and acquisitions. At its OpenWorld user conference in September, Oracle announced a series of partnerships, including ones with VMware, Microsoft, and Deloitte.
The Buzz: “Mark was my close and irreplaceable friend, and trusted colleague. Oracle has lost a brilliant and beloved leader who personally touched the lives of so many of us during his decade at Oracle,” wrote Ellison in an online posting. “All of us will miss Mark’s keen mind and rare ability to analyze, simplify, and solve problems quickly. Some of us will miss his friendship and mentorship. I will miss his kindness and sense of humor. Mark leaves his beloved wife, Paula, two wonderful daughters who were the joy of his life, and his much larger extended family here at Oracle who came to love him.”