HP takes on U.K. upgrade

Hewlett-Packard Co. won a seven-year, $340 million contract from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office to upgrade the information technology infrastructure for all ministry locations in the United Kingdom and overseas, the FCO said yesterday.

The FCO is the U.K.'s equivalent of the U.S. State Department.

Under the contract ? the largest the FCO has issued ? HP will be responsible for the IT infrastructure for the ministry's Firecrest system, a secure global IT desktop network that connects staff at home and overseas.

HP will be working with FCO Services ? the ministry's in-house IT operation and developers of the system -- to design, plan, implement and operate the infrastructure upgrade called Future Firecrest. Under a joint service delivery team, they will roll out new hardware, software and services to offices in the U.K. and to more than 200 foreign posts during a two-year period. Lead responsibility for individual elements will be given to the partnership member that is best positioned to deliver.

Based in Palo Alto, Calif., HP provides technology solutions to both the private and public sectors worldwide. The company employs about 151,000 workers and had 2004 revenue of $79.9 billion for the fiscal year ended Oct. 31, 2004. It ranks No. 56 on Washington Technology's 2004 Top 100 List of federal prime contractors.

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