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Sadleirs takes Oracle to court over technology shortcomings

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Logistics outfit says tech provider’s claims about its solution's capabilities were misleading

Sadleirs takes Oracle to court over technology shortcomings
Sadleirs and Oracle agreed on a software overhaul in 2017

 

In late 2017, Western Australian transport and logistics firm Sadleirs broke cover on its IT overhaul driven by technology provider Oracle. Less than two years after that announcement, Sadleirs is suing Oracle, accusing it of deception regarding the capabilities of its transport management system.

The lawsuit, filed with the NSW Federal Court, shows Sadleirs challenges Oracle Corporation’s Australian division on a number of representations it made to a request for information (RFI) – particularly around its ability to support an all-encompassing transport solution.

On February 15, 2015, Sadleirs, "wishing to upgrade its computer software suite to achieve an integrated ‘end to end’ solution whereby all its logistics, warehousing and financial information technology requirements could be managed by one integrated system", provided an RFI to Oracle.

Oracle made a submission on February 26 containing the completed RFI criteria.

Both signed a contract, having agreed to terms in August 2017.

The group also entered into an agreement with Oracle partner PrimeQ to implement the Oracle cloud solution, which Sadleirs says was recommended by Oracle.

In an interview with ATN in early 2018, then Sadleirs CEO Ian Kent said the company was due for a tech "awakening", with expectations its revenue would double due to the integrated capacity coming from the business improvements from the new IT system.

"This system will launch us into a new phase, we’ve already won a lot of work on our current system so as we roll this system out it will give us greater capacity to do more for our customers than we ever have before," Kent said.

Sadleirs now seeks for that contract to be void, or a refund of the licence fees for the programs, and potential compensation for loss and damage.

The RFI response notes Sadleirs’ requirements were "supported", and that the Oracle Transport Management (OTM) program provided a single platform for companies to manage all transport activity throughout their supply chain.

Sadleirs says it entered into contract having relied upon the accuracy of Oracle’s representations, many of which it now claims were "misleading and deceptive".

It provides examples of 27 representations in the RFI criteria which were not supported or have not been able to be provided except with customisation.

These include perceived simple functions such as cost allocation, journey management, load management, despatch management and timeslot functionality.

A further eight additional representations made by Oracle – regarding: browser, single platform, complex requirements, integration, external users, efficiency, robustness, multiple formats – were also "false", Sadleirs claims.

A hearing date is set for October 11, 2019.

Kent departed the company in May this year, replaced by David Cole.

ATN has contacted Sadleirs for comment. Oracle says it will not be responding on the matter.

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