Cisco hopes to acquire Pure Digital; Oracle to fork out dividends

Headlines: Cisco plans on Pure Digital acquisition; Oracle announces dividend, says maintenance holds steady; Microsoft mixes Silverlight 3.

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IT channel news briefs for March 19, 2009

Cisco plans on Pure Digital acquisition

Cisco Systems plans to acquire the maker of the popular Flip Video brand, Pure Digital Technologies, by the end of Cisco's fourth quarter. The company will become part of Cisco's Consumer Business Group once the acquisition is complete.

Cisco is expected to pay an estimated $590 million in stock in exchange for all of Pure Digital's shares and will provide up to $15 million in equity incentives for continuing employees.

Oracle announces dividend, says maintenance holds steady

Oracle Corp. announced its first-ever dividend on its earnings call Thursday night. President Safra Catz announced the move, citing the company's $8 billion cash flow. The company will pay five cents per share of common stock per quarter.

Chairman Larry Ellison said Oracle "sold more new licenses in Q3 in the face of a worldwide global recession and great reductions in capital spending … new license sales actually grew year over year in constant dollars." Of course, in that time, Oracle has bought more market share and customers with its $8.5 billion acquisition of BEA Systems. Catz also said Oracle's service and support revenue, a closely watched metric, rose 21% in constant currency and 12% in terms of U.S. dollars for the quarter. Company execs repeatedly pointed to currency fluctuations and their drag on earnings.

Microsoft mixes Silverlight 3

Microsoft is expected to announce availability of its Internet Explorer 8 browser today in Las Vegas. The company already trotted out its next Web toolsets at the MIX09 show in Las Vegas this week. Betas of Silverlight 3 and a preview of Expression Blend 3 debuted at the annual show. The new Silverlight lets developers write offline, out-of-browser applications. Expression Blend 3 features SketchFlow a new prototyping tool, according to SearchWinDevelopment.com. The Microsoft Web Platform and Web App Gallery, a website that lets administrators quickly install server applications, are also new developments.

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