No. 18: Verizon's well-rounded plan
Expanded security offerings help company win key government contracts
- By Lisa Terry
- May 01, 2008
Two years after combining the global, wide-area
network capabilities of MCI Corp. with the local,
access and professional services of Verizon,
Verizon Federal has settled into its role as a managed
network services provider to agencies
across the federal government. The combined
entity continues to build on each company's previous
success with major wins in those arenas,
such as Networx and Washington Interagency
Telecommunications System (WITS) 3.
Verizon comes in at No. 18 on this year's Top
100 list with federal prime contract revenue of
Verizon Federal, an organization within
Verizon Business dedicated to serving federal
government customers, rounded out that expertise
in 2007 with the acquisition of Cybertrust to
create an enhanced Verizon Business Security
"We manage more security
devices in the world
than anyone else, and that
stability is very important
when it comes to supporting
the federal government,"
said Susan Zeleniak, vice
president of federal markets
at Verizon Business.
Verizon's newly expanded
security capabilities have
already helped the company
win contracts such as the Veterans Affairs
Department's Identity Management award.
The WITS 3 contract, which has a four-year
term with four one-year options, is worth as
much as $1.8 billion. WITS 3 covers local telecom
services and products for federal agencies in
Washington and portions of the Maryland
and Virginia suburbs. Verizon Business
held the previous WITS2001 contract.
Verizon Business was one of three
prime contractors awarded the federal
government's Networx Universal and
Networx Enterprise contracts, which
authorized the company to compete for
business from individual agencies.
Networx is among the largest federal communications
contracts in history and represents
a significant portion of Verizon
Federal's business. The company continues
to aggressively pursue and win contracts
under this vehicle.
"Our past performance was significant
in this area," Zeleniak said. "We serve just
about every agency either through network
services or professional services ?
and at a good price."
"Verizon is basically the 800-pound
gorilla," said Jerry
Edgerton, who retired
as president of Verizon
Federal and is now chief
executive officer at
Command Information, a
consulting firm. "They have
the power of incumbency,
and that goes a long way,"
Edgerton said. "However,
staying power creates a
degree of inertia and limits
flexibility to be creative, and this time now is all
about creativity, being first to market and taking
advantage of having everything connected
to the network. That is where their limitation
Federal agencies account for about half of
Verizon's government business and, together
with state and local government work, constitutes
about 20 percent of Verizon
The bundling of services is helping agencies
stay on budget, and newly developed tools to
provide dashboard visibility into network performance
enable agencies to confidently outsource
network management and security
without loss of control.
"Security and mobility will be the biggest challenges"
for agencies, Zeleniak added. "Security is
so important to every agency now, whether for
identity management or to safeguard personal
information. Everything we do, we approach
with the question, 'What about security?'"