Contractors win big at USAID

A recent stream of contracts has opened doors for companies

The U.S. Agency for International Development has awarded a steady stream of large-scale information technology contracts in the past several months, capping the run with the recent award of a multivendor deal potentially worth $4 billion.

USAID isn’t typically associated with projects of that magnitude, but systems integrators now provide a range of services for the agency, from consulting to help-desk support.

The string of deals started in July 2005, when the agency awarded its $90 million Principle Resources for Information Management Enterprisewide (PRIME) 3.1 management consulting-oriented blanket purchase agreement (BPA). Then, in September, it awarded a $77 million contract to an international consortium of companies that will build a system to distribute pharmaceuticals to people with HIV/AIDS worldwide. Booz Allen Hamilton and Northrop Grumman IT are among the contractors involved.

This month, SRA International landed a $125 million BPA to provide IT and advisory services to USAID’s Office of Economic Growth, Agriculture and Trade. Also this month, the agency awarded a five-year, $4 billion PRIME 3.2 BPA to five integrators: AT&T, Computer Sciences Corp., Northrop Grumman IT, ManTech International and SRA.

Market observers attribute the recent activity to two factors: an ongoing push to integrate, where appropriate, USAID’s and the State Department’s IT infrastructures, and the “transformational diplomacy” initiative that Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice announced earlier this year.

USAID and State want to create more integrated management structures, according to their strategic plan. Centralized IT and communications, meanwhile, help support transformational diplomacy, which seeks to advance democracy worldwide.

The PRIME 3.2 award program can help USAID and State improve efficiency in their infrastructure, said Dale Luddeke, vice president of national security and foreign affairs at CSC’s Federal Sector Enforcement, Security and Intelligence Division.

James Krouse, director of public-sector market analysis at Input, said he views PRIME 3.2 as consistent with “consolidation and centralization efforts in the name of the federal enterprise architecture.” USAID’s approach, he added, is one that “many of the other agencies are gravitating toward as well.”

PRIME 3.2 covers IT operations and maintenance support services, communications operations and support services, customer support services, and systems integration support services.

The agency’s IT contracting activity appears set to continue. Pending procurements include PRIME 3.3, which Krouse described as an $850 million pact with an IT security slant, and the International Governmental Integrity and Anti-Corruption Technical Assistance program, a $500 million initiative.

The Fed 100

Read the profiles of all this year's winners.

Featured

  • Then-presidential candidate Donald Trump at a 2016 campaign event. Image: Shutterstock

    'Buy American' order puts procurement in the spotlight

    Some IT contractors are worried that the "buy American" executive order from President Trump could squeeze key innovators out of the market.

  • OMB chief Mick Mulvaney, shown here in as a member of Congress in 2013. (Photo credit Gage Skidmore/Flickr)

    White House taps old policies for new government makeover

    New guidance from OMB advises agencies to use shared services, GWACs and federal schedules for acquisition, and to leverage IT wherever possible in restructuring plans.

  • Shutterstock image (by Everett Historical): aerial of the Pentagon.

    What DOD's next CIO will have to deal with

    It could be months before the Defense Department has a new CIO, and he or she will face a host of organizational and operational challenges from Day One

  • USAF Gen. John Hyten

    General: Cyber Command needs new platform before NSA split

    U.S. Cyber Command should be elevated to a full combatant command as soon as possible, the head of Strategic Command told Congress, but it cannot be separated from the NSA until it has its own cyber platform.

  • Image from Shutterstock.

    DLA goes virtual

    The Defense Logistics Agency is in the midst of an ambitious campaign to eliminate its IT infrastructure and transition to using exclusively shared, hosted and virtual services.

  • Fed 100 logo

    The 2017 Federal 100

    The women and men who make up this year's Fed 100 are proof positive of what one person can make possibile in federal IT. Read on to learn more about each and every winner's accomplishments.

Reader comments

Please post your comments here. Comments are moderated, so they may not appear immediately after submitting. We will not post comments that we consider abusive or off-topic.

Please type the letters/numbers you see above

More from 1105 Public Sector Media Group