Global Crossing Nets Pentagon Deal With Big Potential

The Defense Department has selected Global Crossing Government Markets, a unit of Global Crossing Ltd., to provide advanced wide-area network services for its Defense Research and Engineering Network, the company announced July 10.

The contract has a three-year base period with seven one-year options and is valued at $137 million, with the potential to exceed $400 million over the contract's life.

The DREN network is the Defense Department's long-haul communication service provider for the agency's High Performance Computing Modernization Program. Using its high-speed Internet backbone, Bermuda-based Global Crossing will design, develop and manage a state-of-the-art, secure virtual private network for DREN.

Users of the Defense Department network will be able to communicate and collaborate in real time throughout the United States, Puerto Rico, Guam and other U.S. territories.

Global Crossing will support the program by linking more than 6,000 scientists and engineers at defense laboratories, test centers, universities and industry sites throughout the United States and beyond via a single, contiguous fiber-optic network. Connectivity in the Asia-Pacific region will be provided by the company's affiliate, Asia Global Crossing.

"The Office of the Secretary of Defense is investing a significant amount of funding in high-performance computing to provide the United States military with a technological advantage to support warfighting requirements," said Rodger Johnson, program manager of DREN.

"DREN is the cornerstone of that effort. ... [Its] customers employ applications that require enormous computing capabilities. Global Crossing provides us with the network services to effectively collaborate online from every location," he said.

Paul Kayatta, president of Global Crossing Government Markets, said the DREN agreement "represents a significant opportunity for Global Crossing to service the U.S. government, and underscores the company's commitment to helping governments worldwide meet their communication and connectivity needs."

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