EDS wins E-Travel contract

The General Services Administration yesterday awarded EDS Corp. a contract to provide online travel management for the E-Travel program, adding the company to two previously contracted vendors.

The Plano, Texas, company protested GSA's original award to Carlson Wagonlit Government Travel Inc. of San Antonio and the Mission Systems unit of Northrop Grumman Corp., in August. EDS said GSA did not properly evaluate all the offers.

GSA decided to reopen the competition rather than defend its actions to the General Accounting Office.

Carlson Wagonlit, EDS and Northrop Grumman will provide online travel management services under the E-Travel contract, which could be worth $450 million over 10 years.

E-Travel is one of the Office of Management and Budget's 25 Quicksilver e-government initiatives and one of five that GSA manages.

GSA asked the three vendors to redemonstrate their technologies, and agency officials decided to award contracts to them all.

"We are pleased that GSA took a closer look at our system, Fedtraveler.com, and thought it was worthy of participating in the contract," said Bill Ritz, an EDS spokesman. He claimed the system "will save government travelers as much as 50 percent of their travel costs as well as streamline the travel process."

EDS' team includes MIL Corp. of Bowie, Md., and Zegato Solutions Inc. of Lanham, Md. The Veterans Affairs Department, Marshals Service and International Trade Commission already use Zegato's travel system platform, Ritz said.

The systems will undergo independent verification and validation and are expected to be available to agencies by the end of April, GSA said. Civilian agencies have until Sept. 30, 2006, to migrate to one of the three systems, officials said.

Jason Miller writes for Government Computer News magazine.

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