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Oracle and SAP settle long-running lawsuit

American computer technology company Oracle and the German software corporation SAP have settled a long-running copyright dispute for around $356.7 million (£228 million).

The argument over improper downloads of Oracle files prompted a fierce legal battle between the two rivals, which started when SAP’s TomorrowNow, an Oracle customer support company, charged lower rates for offering support.

They hoped to force Oracle into becoming SAP customers but instead, Oracle filed a lawsuit in 2007, after noticing what they claimed to be suspicious downloads of their software.

A first instance verdict, brought in 2010, awarded the American firm $1.3 billion (£832 million), but was subsequently knocked down.

A federal appeals court said earlier this year that Oracle could accept the £356.7 million or go for a new trial against SAP.

"We are thrilled about this landmark recovery and extremely gratified that our efforts to protect innovation and our shareholders' interests are duly rewarded," stated Oracle's general counsel Dorian Daley.

In response, SAP said: “We’re pleased that the court ultimately accepted SAP’s arguments to limit Oracle’s excessive damages claims and that Oracle has finally chosen to end this matter.”

After the lawsuit, SAP admitted that their employees were downloading Oracle files illegally but claimed the damages claims were too high.

Those downloads prompted a criminal probe, that forced SAP into paying $20 million (£12.8 million).

The trial that took place in 2010 drew widespread media attention as top Oracle executives Larry Ellison and Safra Catz both testified in court.