IBM ( IBM) may have just lost Sun Microsystems ( JAVA) to Oracle ( ORCL), but the tech giant does not expect the merged rivals to pose any new threats. If IBM is feeling sore about the collapse of its own attempt to buy Sun, then it is doing a good job of not showing it. The Armonk, N.Y.-based firm, which reported its first-quarter results after the market close Monday, was grilled about the impact of Oracle's $7.4 billion Sun purchase during a conference call with analysts. "They now have the same address and the same mailbox, but we are talking about the same team we have been competing against for some time and winning," scoffed IBM CFO Mark Loughridge, in response to an analyst's question. Loughridge said Oracle and Sun have been partnering for two decades, adding that his firm has picked up 14 points of market share against its rivals since 2000. "As I look at this and ask myself what has really changed -- I think nothing," said the CFO. "We have been competing with Sun
and we know Oracle inside out." Not everyone, however, is as dismissive, and at least one analyst warns that Oracle's decision to grab struggling Sun could have massive ramifications for the tech sector. "Oracle is the new hardware/software/services powerhouse," wrote Stuart Williams, an analyst at Technology Business Research (TBR), in a note released Monday. "This deal directly threatens the dominance of IBM and Microsoft> ( MSFT) on the software side and IBM and HP on the hardware side."