Navy adds to IT-21 offerings

The Navy this month awarded a blanket purchase agreement that adds several IBM Corp. products to a list of choices available to its Atlantic Fleet as part of a program to connect its ships and bases with commercial desktop systems.

The Navy's Fleet Industrial Supply Center in Philadelphia awarded the BPA, part of the Information Technology for the 21st Century (IT-21) program, to Inacom Corp., Fairfax, Va. It is the seventh award made that meets the ship and onshore requirements of the Atlantic Fleet, said Barry Jones, contracting specialist for the Navy.

The contract is expected to run through 2004 or later, he said. The seven awards are worth $20 million a year, he said.

"Inacom provided products we hadn't had before," Jones said. The products include several IBM computer systems. The Navy chose the products because of their "mix and delivery and storage capability," he said. The last BPA was awarded to Compaq Computer Corp. in July.

The Navy plans to rely on IT-21 to better automate administrative and tactical operations. The initiative will provide the underpinnings for the Navy's movement toward "network-centric warfare," in which tactical intelligence and logistics information becomes as much a weapon as light arms or heavy armor.Inacom has offered the Navy IBM laptops, desktops, workstations and servers with specific options for hard drive upgrades, memory upgrades and docking stations, said Jan Kramer, senior project manager in Inacom's business development group.

The company also offered Hewlett-Packard Co. printers and scanners, Lexmark International Inc. printers, American Power Conversion Corp. uninterruptible power supply systems, and 3Com Corp. networking equipment ranging from interface cards to bridges and routers, Kramer said. The firm also offered 3Com PalmPilot handheld computers.

Included in the BPA are professional services and management consulting as well as IT-21-approved Microsoft Corp. software, Kramer said.

"This is very important for us because we were working with the Navy on the [Naval Aviation Logistics Command Management Information System] contract, in which we provided shipboard equipment," Kramer said. "This is our next Navy deal that we negotiated directly with the contracting officer."

Discounts on some of the desktops range from 8 percent to 12 percent off the company's General Services Administration schedule, Kramer said. Discounts on the laptops vary from 15 percent to 20 percent. Part of the BPA is a fixed discount guarantee for each product group that varies between 2 percent and 5 percent, he said.

To add to its work for the Navy, Inacom is looking to join a team to bid on the Naval/Marine Corps Intranet contract in the near future, Kramer said.

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