The US Department of Defense has revealed that Amazon and Microsoft have been chosen to continue competing for the Pentagon’s $10bn cloud computing contract.
This means that Oracle and IBM are officially out of the running for the Defense Department’s Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure Cloud (JEDI) contract that is part of the Pentagon’s broad modernization effort of its IT systems.
Department spokesperson Elissa Smith confirmed that AWS and Microsoft are now the only two companies left in the running for the lucrative JEDI contract in a statement, saying:
“I can confirm that AWS (Amazon Web Services) and Microsoft are the companies that met the minimum requirements outlined.”
Last year during its request for bidders, the Pentagon said that the contract for cloud computing services could be worth as much as $10bn over a 10-year period.
When the JEDI contract was first announced, AWS, IBM, Microsoft and Oracle were considered front runners though at the time, AWS was the only company with government approval to handle secret and even top secret data.
Due to the size and complexity of the deal, the earliest a contract will be awarded is likely in mid-July.
However, there is still an ongoing investigation into Oracle’s claims that AWS was given an unfair advantage in the bidding process. Oracle has taken issue with the fact that a former Amazon employee who worked on the JEDI contract recused himself from his position and then later went back to work at AWS.
According to Smith though, a department review of the acquisitions process did not uncover any potential ethical violations.