Lockheed, Microsoft pair on fed IT

A pair of industry titans are forming a strategic alliance targeted at pursuing new business opportunities in the federal information technology market.

Lockheed Martin Corp. and Microsoft Corp. will collaborate on seeking new opportunities as part of a formal alliance, which actually continues several years of partnerships on various projects, said Pete Harrigan, a Lockheed spokesman.

The initial process will include an analysis of agencies where each com.pany has had success. This step will help identify departments where the alliance partners hope to compete in the future.

"We expect it to be a very rapid process," Harrigan said. "One attribute of the federal IT market is: Those who are nimble, win. We expect this to be a nimble, responsive relationship."

Lockheed Martin and Microsoft have existing relationships on:

The Air Force Integrated Space Command and Control program, an upgrade of the North American Aerospace Defense Command Cheyenne Mountain Complex. The integrated warfare system for the Navy's next nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, CVN 77. The Air Force's Global Command Support System. The Defense Department's Defense Message System. "The more we worked together on these programs, the more we saw how each company has specific strengths that it brings to the federal IT marketplace," Harrigan said. "The trust and respect build by working together, and it made sense to formalize the alliance."

Under the agreement, announced May 24, Lockheed and Microsoft will work cooperatively to pursue new federal business, principally IT programs.

The companies also will jointly de.velop new proposals and certify Lockheed technical staff as Microsoft Certified Systems Engineers and Microsoft Certified Solution Developers. Each of Lockheed's four principal business areas — aeronautics, space, systems integration and technology services — will have access to Microsoft technologies and products. "The alliance means our customers get an established player in the federal market — Lockheed Martin — and an incredibly cost-effective, reliable and scalable software platform," said Pete Hayes, vice president of Washington, D.C.-based Microsoft Government.

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