Strong software sales have boosted Oracle's profits, raising it by 35 percent compared to the same period last year, to US$1.3 billion. Total turnover grew by 28 percent to $5.3 billion, Oracle said.

Oracle had major gains in new licence revenue for applications, which rose by 63 percent, and for database and middleware products, which saw a 28 percent increase. The company saw services-based revenue grow by 22 percent to $1.2 billion over last year.

"Obviously, we had another great quarter," Oracle's president and CFO, said Safra Catz. "The numbers represent Oracle's "fastest growth rate in more than a decade," according to Catz.

She noted that Oracle thrived even amid the widespread financial turmoil that has resulted from the sub-prime mortgage meltdown, an outcome she chalked up to the company's "broad, highly diversified customer base, both by industry and geographically."

CEO Larry Ellison added that Oracle is finding new business by targeting vertical industries that may not be using packaged software like the kind Oracle sells. "Some of these verticals are almost green fields in terms of modern software," he said.

The company's president, Charles Phillips, echoed Ellison. "We think we're very early on in this strategy," he said. "We're still selling in the verticals who are building applications. We're trying to convince them to buy packaged applications."

The executives also honed in on Oracle's competitors, chiefly SAP, which is now targeting small- and medium-sized companies with its Business ByDesign on-demand ERP software.

"We've elected not to go into the [SMB] market because we don't see any synergy," Ellison said.

Phillips said Oracle has managed to snare business from a string of SAP customers this year, crediting in part the business intelligence software that Oracle gained through its acquisition of Hyperion. "That's a product that's been key for getting into many, many SAP accounts," he said.