Concept Automation, Cordant win NTOPS

Concept Automation Inc. and Cordant Inc. last week won a long-awaited Navy contract for 60,000-plus PCs that will provide users with Pentium PCs on their desks and 486-based laptops.

The Naval Information Systems Management Center (NISMC) valued the award of the New Technology for Office and Portable Systems (NTOPS) contract to Concept Automation, a subsidiary of BTG Inc., at $98.1 million and the award to Cordant at $108 million.

When the Navy released the NTOPS procurement, vendors predicted the service would select the lowest-priced Pentium solution, a supposition confirmed by NISMC in a post-award announcement.

"The two technically acceptable awardees were selected based on overall lowest adjusted-total evaluated price. The evaluated price was adjusted downward for performance [and] value-added credits," NISMC said.

Both companies declined to provide details of their bids until the protest period expires. A Cordant spokesman said his company will offer Navy and Marine users PCs supplied by Everex Systems Inc. Cordant will offer 100 MHz and 120 MHz Pentium desktops and a 486DX4 100 notebook.

Concept Automation declined to identify its suppliers. Industry sources said Concept Automation will build its own line of PCs around a motherboard sourced from Elite Group Inc. through Capitol Marketing Resources.

Rear Adm. James Davidson, NISMC commander, said users definitely need the advanced technology offered by NTOPS.

On a recent visit to the USS Saipan, a major amphibious ship due for rotation to the Adriatic Sea, Davidson discovered that Marine command and control gear on the ship consisted of obsolete Zenith Data Systems Z-248 PCs. "We need to outfit and upgrade our battle groups," Davidson said.

Despite the recent streamlining of the General Services Administration's PC schedule contracts, Davidson said he believes large-scale contracts such as NTOPS offer users prices "10 to 40 percent better than the GSA schedule."

Davidson said NISMC plans to quickly follow up the NTOPS award with the follow-on Navy Desktop procurement, valued at $400 million to $500 million. NISMC plans to release the Navdesk proposal by the end of fiscal 1996.

Competing bidders for NTOPS included International Data Products Corp. and ZDS.

George Fuster, IDP's president, declined to say whether his company planned to protest "because we have not yet received our debriefing from the Navy."

Pat Gallagher, sales vice president of ZDS, echoed Fuster, saying his company could not make a protest decision until it was debriefed.

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