Page last updated at 10:28 GMT, Friday, 18 December 2009

Oracle expects Sun Microsystems deal in January

Oracle headquarters
Oracle is the world's biggest database software maker

Oracle has said it expects the European Union to approve its deal with Sun Microsystems in January next year.

Oracle is in the process of buying Sun for $7.4bn (£4.6bn). The deal has already been cleared by US regulators.

"I want to thank all of our customers for the overwhelming support they have given us during the process," said Oracle president Safra Catz.

Oracle's also reported second quarter results ahead of forecasts, with net income up 12% to $1.46bn.

Revenue from new software licences rose 2% in the three months to November.

The figure is used as a sign of future profit because most new customers sign maintenance contracts when they buy software - which is where Oracle makes most of its money.

Ms Catz said: "We are definitely seeing customers back buying and it was extremely widespread."

Technology companies are benefiting from the improvement in the world economy.

"The environment is gradually getting better. I don't think this means we are back to the races but it's more predictable," said Heather Bellini from ISI Group.

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