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Oracle Co-CEO Mark Hurd has removed himself from the software company's operations while he battles an un-specified, but apparently long-term illness. The company announced this week that chairman Larry Ellison and co-CEO Safra Catz will take over his duties.

“Mark was extremely involved with business. through the end of the quarter, now he must take care of himself and his illness,” Catz said during this week’s webcast for earnings for the first quarter ended August 31. The company moved up its earnings report after a call from Bloomberg News triggered Oracle’s decision to disclose the illness, which Bloomberg said had affected Hurd for more than a year and other reports said it had been an open secret in Silicon Valley. Oracle did not disclose the nature of the illness, but in an opinion peace, Bloomberg author, Shira Ovide wrote that during the last year,“Oracle officials gave different explanations over the past year and a half for why Hurd skipped events or why his appearance seemed to change.” Ovide criticized Oracle for failure to go public earlier. While companies aren’t required to make such a disclosure, the article continued, “It was a humane personal decision, but it was the wrong corporate one.”

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