REDWOOD SHORES, CA—Jim Finn, who managed communications for Oracle Corporation throughout its 18 month battle to acquire PeopleSoft, is leaving the company as the deal nears completion. He will be replaced by Jeff Lettes, formerly director of worldwide media relations at Applied Materials, where he was the company’s primary spokesman for the past seven years.
Finn joined Oracle in October of 2001, when the senior public relations position had been open for 12 months and after former Clinton spokesman Joe Lockhart’s brief stint as a senior communications counselor to CEO Larry Ellison. Finn seemed to work well with Ellison, adopting a combative PR style that suited the CEO’s own brash approach.
Before Oracle, Finn was senior vice president for public relations at the Chase Manhattan Corporation, responsible for the strategic external communications objectives of the corporation including media relations, executive communications and financial communications. Prior to joining Chase, he was an executive with the New York-based treasurer’s office of General Motors and worked for IBM’s Europe, Middle East and Africa operations in the company’s Paris office.
He built a strong communications team at Oracle, including Kristen Hollins, who overseas international public relations and executive communications, and Bob Wynne, named senior vice president of strategic media relations last year.
Lettes will take responsibility for corporate communications activities including public relations, analyst relations, competitive intelligence and employee communications, reporting directly to Charles Phillips, the company’s president.