Treasury BPAs bridge contract gap

The Treasury Department this month awarded four blanket purchase agreements potentially worth a total of about $125 million for software and major name-brand desktop computers, laser printers, notebooks and servers.

ComTeq, Government Technology Services Inc. and Presidio Corp. each won BPAs worth about $40 million, and Telos Corp. captured a BPA for more than $4 million for software from the Treasury Departmental Acquisition program, said Greg Roseman, a contracting officer at Treasury.

Roseman said the three major BPAs will supply products such as Dell Computer Corp., Compaq Computer Corp., Micron Electronics Corp. and IBM Corp. computers. Additionally, Telos will provide Microsoft Corp.'s Exchange server and its client e-mail software, Outlook 98.

The BPAs will fill in a gap caused by the expiration of the TDA-1 and TDA-2 contracts and will serve as a bridge until the TDA-3 contract is awarded, said Dan McLaughlin, chief of the departmental systems branch at the Internal Revenue Service.

Treasury decided to award multiple-BPA contracts to encourage competition among vendors agencywide so that customers can get a bargain price, McLaughlin said.

"What we're trying to do with the BPAs is establish a marketplace economy where different vendors are competing,'' McLaughlin said. "That puts a lot of price pressure on the players. It's almost a constant competition. It's a tremendous sense of fairness. It's pretty clever.''

No decisions have been made about when the TDA-3 contract will be awarded, McLaughlin said. However, the BPAs will be evaluated after TDA-3 has been awarded, he said.

Lori Jones, national account manager of the U.S. Treasury at Presidio, said her company supports the competition. She said awarding more than one BPA is a healthy approach for Treasury because it almost guarantees that the department's customers will receive quality service.

"I think we are spending taxpayers' money more responsibly,'' Jones said. "It's going to give the government the best solution and the best service. The different vendors will provide different service. Presidio is very much customer-focused for whatever the problem may be; we identify one key person that the customer may contact. So the competition keeps me on my toes.''

Jones said Presidio will provide agencywide commercial off-the-shelf products such as desktop PCs and services.

Joel Lipkin, vice president of business development at GTSI, said his company will use its BPA primarily as a vehicle for notebooks, desktop PCs and servers from Compaq and laser printers from Hewlett-Packard Co. "We are the largest reseller on the GSA schedule,'' Lipkin said. "This BPA is a recognition of our position as a major GSA reseller.''

Ron Clevenger, director of federal sales for Micron, said his company will supply desktop PCs, portable notebooks and servers to ComTeq.

McLaughlin said all four BPA awardees will meet Oct. 31 to review the ground rules and build a friendly, competitive rapport.

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