Army gets $12B ITES-3S awards out the door

The Army finally awards its much-anticipated $12.1 billion ITES-3S contract, the branch's primary mechanism to acquire commercial IT services.

The Army has finally made dozens of awards on a much-anticipated $12.1 billion contract that its primary mechanism to acquire commercial IT services.

Information Technology Enterprise Solutions 3 Services -- also known as “ITES-3S” – had been held up by several pre-award protests since the Army issued the final solicitation in March 2016. More recently in April, the Army extended the current ITES-2S iteration for another two years to mitigate potential disruption stemming from a series of pre-award protests after that solicitation’s release.

In total, the Army made 135 awards on the potential nine-year ITES-3S contract that has five base years and four individual option years, according to the Pentagon’s Tuesday awards digest. But with 187 total bids received, more protests could follow from those who did not make the cut.

These new awards break out to 52 for ITES-3S’ unrestricted portion and 83 for the small business set-aside track. The unrestricted portion also has small business winners.

Those possible protests will not come from any of the 16 incumbents on the current contract, however. They all were selected for ITES-3S with some of those incumbencies inherited through much of the recent merger-and-acquisition activity that has swirled in the market over the past two years.

ITES’ services scope encompasses nearly all areas of enterprise IT that include cybersecurity, integration, consolidation, telecommunications, supply chain management, operation and maintenance, business process engineering, and education and training.

This award of the ITES third version’s services contract comes two years after the Army opened the companion $5 billion hardware vehicle for business to itself and those 17 awardees. Companies on that contract known as "ITES-3H" are vying for orders to supply commercial IT equipment such as desktop and laptop computers, storage systems, workstations and servers.