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Larry Ellison Chides HP Board for Forcing CEO Hurd to Quit

Oracle CEO Larry Ellison AP Photo

Larry Ellison chided Hewlett Packard for deposing Mark Hurd as CEO.

In a letter emailed to The New York Times, Oracle's CEO slammed Hewlett Packard's board for making a mistake he likened to Apple's 1985 decision to send co-founder Steve Jobs packing.

Hurd stepped down on Friday following a sexual harassment inquiry which turned up evidence that he had inaccurately submitted expense statements.

Silicon Valley execs are usually hesitant to comment on internal decisions taken by other companies. But through his decades-long reign as Oracle CEO, Ellison has often spoken his mind frankly. It's a habit that has caused his public relations handlers to wince but nonetheless helped him forge a self-cultivated persona as an industry executive willing to buck convention.

"The H.P. board just made the worst personnel decision since the idiots on the Apple board fired Steve Jobs many years ago," Ellison wrote. "That decision nearly destroyed Apple and would have if Steve hadn't come back and saved them."

"In losing Mark Hurd, the H.P. board failed to act in the best interest of H.P.'s employees, shareholders, customers and partners," Ellison wrote. "The H.P. board admits that it fully investigated the sexual harassment claims against Mark and found them to be utterly false."

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