The Oracle Database Appliance, introduced in 2011, is catching on with channel partners that focus on SMB customers, Oracle claims. Indeed, roughly 91 percent of Oracle Database Appliance (ODA) sales to date have involved VARs and value-added distributors, according to Juan Loaiza, senior VP of systems technology at Oracle. So who is using the Oracle Database Appliance?

Loaiza mentioned a major U.S. retailer and a major drug store chain during a presentation at Oracle Industry Analyst World (April 17-18, Redwood Shores, Calif.). He also claimed SMB customers are migrating and consolidating their former Microsoft SQL Server deployments onto the Oracle Database Appliance.

Loaiza did not disclose actual sales volumes for the Oracle Database Appliance. And generally speaking, Microsoft tends to have a fiercely faithful channel following in the SMB market. The recent Microsoft SQL Server 2012 release sounds like it has been well received among partners.

That said, the early stats on Oracle Database Appliance sales caught The VAR Guy's ears. Generally speaking, The VAR Guy believes about 30 percent to 40 percent of overall Oracle (NASDAQ: ORCL) revenues come from the channel (our resident blogger needs to check that stat). But nine out of 10 Oracle Database Appliance sales are flowing through the channel, suggesting that Oracle may have found a niche here with channel partners.

The Oracle Database Appliance includes Oracle Linux, the Oracle database, 12 TB of storage, and 24 Intel x86 cores. Customers can leverage pay-as-you-grow software licensing, growing their applications gradually from two to 24 core licenses. Avnet Technology Solutions has been one of the early distributors backing ODA.