This week, Autonomy -- under the spectre of what might happen to its planned acquisition by HP -- announces several new products, and spats about whether Oracle was really its first choice for a partner, plus we have surveys and reports. Boy, do we have surveys and reports.

Autonomy, Part 1

First, Autonomy. The company announced in August that it would be acquired by HP, but ever since the board of directors put former eBay CEO Meg Whitman in charge, there have murmurings that the deal would be scuttled, though Autonomy CEO Mike Lynch emphatically denies it.

Now, Oracle CEO Larry Ellison is sniping at Autonomy, claiming that the U.K. company shopped itself to Oracle first but was rejected because its price was too high. From the Oracle statement:

After HP agreed to acquire Autonomy for over $11.7 billion dollars[sic], Oracle commented that Autonomy had been ‘shopped’ to Oracle as well, but Oracle wasn’t interested because the price was way too high. Mike Lynch, Autonomy CEO, then publically denied that his company had been shopped to Oracle...Either Mr. Lynch has a very poor memory or he’s lying."

The one-paragraph statement went on to describe an April 1 meeting with Lynch at Oracle headquarters. Lynch said the meeting had simply been with Oracle as a client, which led Oracle to release another statement again implying Lynch was lying, along with the slides. It's all under the URL "Please Buy Autonomy." Autonomy, for its part, notes that the slides are dated January 2011 and said they weren't even from the company. 

Why Oracle is sending out statements like this out of the blue is unknown, but The Street had some ideas:

Either Oracle CEO Larry Ellison is determined to destroy HP or he's engaged in a brilliant strategy to drive down HP's stock so that he can buy it at a bargain price."

The Street isn't the only one talking about an Oracle acquisition of HP; it's been suggested since the Autonomy acquisition, plus Business Week revealed this week that HP's CEO switch was intended to forestall such an acquisition

Autonomy, Part 2

Meanwhile, oh yeah, Autonomy announced some products. The company announced optimization and analytics capabilities for its Optimost cloud-based offering, which in turn is part of the Autonomy Promote Suite, a marketing solution that helps businesses understand and detect customer trends, deliver optimized content and increase online conversions and revenue.

The company also announced a new version of its flagship Worksite product. WorkSite version 9.0 provides a private cloud computing platform and new capabilities in mobile support and security, to offer users on-demand secured access to matter content from any mobile device.

Surveys, We Have Surveys

Meanwhile, it's fall and a thousand surveys and reports are in bloom. Or at least three.

  • Symantec's survey noted that many companies do not have fully developed retention policies, and that email has dropped to third, after files and databases, in terms of what documents are most often requested. 
  • IBISWorld's report noted that revenues in the e-Discovery space are up even while the number of vendors are down, due to acquisitions. 
  • Finally, not to be left behind Gartner and Forrester, IDC has released its own report on the e-Discovery marketplace, which it calls Standalone Early Case Assessment applications. That said, the eight vendors that IDC placed in its Leaders section -- Recommind, Clearwell Systems (acquired by Symantec), Autonomy, EMC, Guidance Software, AccessData, Digital Reef and StoredIQ -- are essentially the same ones that Gartner and Forrester also said were leaders in the marketplace.