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Team Spotlight: Ajay Patel, Vice President of Product Management
Oracle Fusion Middleware drives a lot of excitement and innovation, and there are some pretty innovative people behind the technology, too. For this edition, we chat with Ajay Patel, vice president of product management, Oracle Cloud Application Foundation.
Q. Oracle Open World 2013 just concluded. What was your biggest takeaway?
Q. Tell us about the professional journey that brought you to your current role.
A. This is the third product line I have had the opportunity to lead at Oracle. I’ve been in the software industry for more than 20 years, which has given me the opportunity to play a role in all facets of product management, from development to product marketing to customer support and services.
I got into the middleware space via an old mentor, at just about the time when the dot-com boom was starting and Java Platform, Enterprise Edition was the emerging standard. I also helped start Oracle’s service-oriented architecture line of business. After that I spent several years at a startup, and then came back to lead the Oracle Cloud Application Foundation product line.
Q. What energizes you most about your position?
A. What I like the most is that I get to work with a broad spectrum of people—customers, engineers, and other lines of business at Oracle. My role really lets me get into the thick of things—there’s never a dull moment in our organization—and I like the breadth of the role and the challenge involved in doing many different things.
Q. What keeps you up at night?
A. This is a fairly mature business, which makes it challenging to maintain rapid growth rates—after all, it’s easier to grow a smaller base in double digits than a larger business, particularly given the industry changes being brought on by the shift to the cloud.
Q. How would you characterize the value of Oracle Cloud Application Foundation?
A. Oracle Cloud Application Foundation provides customers choice of cloud deployment—public/private, highest performance and density, and lowest total cost of ownership.
Q. Oracle is always busy with strategic product news. Are there any announcements to which you would particularly like to draw attention?
A. The most exciting projects we have are around pulling together the products and services that really give our customers choice and flexibility in how they can use the cloud. We recently launched a cloud service called Oracle WebLogic as a service that allows our customers to run their existing Oracle WebLogic-based applications in Oracle Cloud, where we take on the operational and management of their infrastructure for them. We also have a really exciting private cloud solution with Oracle Exalogic. You can think of it as a high performance cloud-in-a-box solution in customer data centers—just turn on Oracle Exalogic and you have a ready-to-run internal cloud.
For more information, read the following recent press announcements.
A. I find it fascinating that we are going through a transformation as a company that not only gives customers options for the cloud, but also helps them embrace and evolve to the cloud in a way designed to maximize their business potential. We are unique in that we can provide both technical and application breadth and depth, and really help customers bridge the old with the new, while moving at their own pace.
Q. What is a little-known fact about you that nobody would guess when first meeting you?
A. People don’t realize that in 1996 I was part of the Oracle Database team. I helped launch Oracle Parallel Server, which is now Oracle Real Application Clusters.
Q. What free-time activities and interests do you enjoy?
A. I don’t have a lot of free time, but for me, spending time with my family is the most important. I love to travel when I get a chance, and when it comes to sports, I like both tennis and table tennis.
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