Oracle CEO says HP’s CEO ousting was a dumb move

Larry Ellison, CEO of computer services company Oracle, has become the first major public figure in the tech world to publicly attack HP for the rash process of forcing its CEO to quit.

In an e-mail to the New York Time, Ellison wrote, “In losing Mark Hurd, the H-P board failed to act in the best interest of H.P.’s employees, shareholders, customers and partners. The H-P board admits that it fully investigated the sexual harassment claims against Mark and found them to be utterly false.”

Ellison is referring to claims that Hurd had an illicit affair with Jodie Fisher, a woman he took with him on business trips as a consultant. While Fisher did file sexual harassment charges against Hurd, it was later confirmed that the charges were not substantiated.

During the investigation, however, it was determined that Hurd submitted a series of falsified expense reports while traveling, but Ellison is one of a large group of people who believe that the commotion behind Hurd’s potential sexual misconduct was the real reason the board decided to oust him, and now they’re clinging to the false expense reports as a secondary excuse.

Ellison claims to know that the board only originally voted 6-4 to have Hurd leave the company, hardly a slam dunk outcome, but then eventually reached the verdict unanimously.

Hurd leaves with a multi-million dollar deal, but will no longer get to be at the helm of HP, a company he turned around and distinctly improved over the past three years.