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What should we say about Sun buying MySQL ?


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Kaj wrote me email yesterday asking if I was sleeping for a whole week or may be dead because I’m probably the only one of people blogging about MySQL who has not commented about announced Sun – MySQL Deal.

In fact I was just on extremely busy travel schedule last week, so I’m just finding a bit of time now to comment on it.

First it is very interesting for me MySQL choose to be bought out by Sun rather than going IPO even though as I understand majority of the steps required for IPO already were done. This could be related to current market conditions or may be 1B price tag was at higher end what was expected from IPO, It also could be getting mostly cash payment now was attractive.

If we compare price tag of MySQL to other public “Open Source” companies – we can see it being about 1/4 of RedHat or 1/2 of Novel which seems quite decent valuation for me.

As minor MySQL stake holder I would be excited to see stocks traded on the stock exchange though getting decent cash straight away is not bad either.

Looking from Company and Community prospective I have mixed feelings and think a lot depends on how deal will be executed in details. Of course it is better compared to being purchased to Oracle or IBM.

How much independence will MySQL management team have ? How much of big company legal and administrative nightmare would be enforced ? How relationship with other partners will be structured – will Sun will be able to work with Oracle (Innodb Owner) well or will Falcon be pushed hard as Innodb replacement even if it is half baked ? Will better integration with Sun products mean resources will be taken away from making things work as good as they can with Linux ? Will Sun follow Open Source spirit of MySQL Founders (and I mean Founders because spirit is not uniform across everyone in the company) or will we see more and more push to purchase MySQL if you really plan to heavily use it ?

Now for Percona, our consulting company this is mostly positive development. Sun will work on expanding MySQL market further which will mean more consulting work available, and not only that :)

Anyway my warmest congratulations to MySQL Founders, Management and all staff members with this event. I remember Marten saying once on the company meeting few years ago “If MySQL will get market value as Google is now, every one in this room will be millionaires”. This did not happen but I expect at least MySQL old timers to get a good bonus for years of their hard work.

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Peter Zaitsev

Peter managed the High Performance Group within MySQL until 2006, when he founded Percona. Peter has a Master's Degree in Computer Science and is an expert in database kernels, computer hardware, and application scaling.



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