Partnership aimed at grants management

FreeBalance Inc. and PEC Solutions Inc. announced a strategic alliance Monday to jointly pursue opportunities to help federal agencies Web enable and automate their grants management systems.

FreeBalance recently released its e-Grants software, which built on its experience providing financial software to governments worldwide.

The company is targeting a May deadline for federal agencies to submit to Congress their plans to automate and streamline grants management systems. The federal government provides about $300 billion in grants annually to state, local and tribal governments as well as academic institutions and research organizations.

PEC has experience providing Web-enabled electronic government solutions and will help bring FreeBalance's e-government software to the federal market, said Bruce Lazenby, president and chief executive officer of FreeBalance.

"We are a product company, and PEC is a services company," Lazenby said. "Any complex application requires great software and great services."

PEC likely will act as the prime contractor on any opportunities the companies jointly pursue, Lazenby said. The companies will collaborate on sales and business development initiatives, marketing campaigns, solution delivery and post-implementation support for the grants management systems.

The alliance will be used to focus purely on electronic grants management for the near term, Lazenby said.

A Federal Register notice Jan. 17 asked for input on agencies' grants management processes as part of the federal Chief Financial Officers Council's effort to create a portal to centralize federal grants information.

In the future, FreeBalance hopes to work with PEC to market its upcoming releases of e-permits and e-licensing products, Lazenby said.

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