JEDI is canceled.
The Pentagon said today that it will reject the $ 10 billion Joint Business Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) contract, a massive project to migrate the Pentagon’s computing infrastructure and data to the cloud, following a protracted legal battle between tech rivals. Amazon and Microsoft.
The decision marks a surprising end to a lengthy bidding process and a multi-year judicial saga during one of the largest IT acquisitions in US history.
In a statement, the Defense Department said that JEDI “no longer meets the requirements to fill the Defense Department’s capacity gaps.” It will look for a new contract called Joint Warfighter Cloud Capability (JWCC) that is expected to reach multiple vendors.
Amazon was seen as one of the pioneers of JEDI, but Microsoft won the contract in October 2019, beating other competitors, including IBM and Oracle.
Amazon later protested that decision, claiming that former President Donald Trump’s personal animosity toward the company improperly influenced the outcome.
The Defense Department reviewed the decision after a federal judge issued a preliminary injunction. Upon review, the DoD reaffirmed the decision in September.
In April, a federal judge in the Court of Federal Claims refused to dismiss allegations that Trump interfered with the contract, allowing Amazon to continue its argument in court.
In addition to allegations that the White House improperly influenced the acquisition process, Amazon claimed that the Defense Department made a variety of technical errors in evaluating the relative merits of the offers. The Defense Department previously said that “Microsoft’s proposal continues to represent the best value for the government,” according to a September statement.
In a blog postMicrosoft said that “we understand the foundation of the Department of Defense and we support them and all members of the military who need the 21st century mission critical technology that JEDI would have provided.”
“The Department of Defense faced a difficult decision: continue with what could be a litigation battle of years or find another way forward,” wrote Toni Townes-Whitley, president of Microsoft, US Regulated Industries. “America’s security is more important than any individual contract, and we know that Microsoft will do well when the nation does well. Because the security of the United States through the provision of critical technology updates is more important than any individual contract, we respect and accept the decision of the Department of Defense to move forward a different path to secure mission critical technology. ” .
He also shot Amazon.
“The 20 months since the Department of Defense selected Microsoft as its JEDI partner highlights the issues that deserve the attention of policymakers: when a company can delay critical technology updates for defenders for years our nation’s protest process needs reform, “the blog post noted.