Five qualify for $4 billion USAID IT services deal

Five companies won the right to compete for task orders under a five-year, $4 billion IT and communications services contract from the U.S. Agency for International Development.

AT&T Government Solutions Inc., Computer Sciences Corp., ManTech International Corp., Northrop Grumman Information Technology and SRA International Inc. received blanket purchase agreements for the Principal Resource for Information Management Enterprisewide program, also known as Prime 3.2.

The program is the follow-on to the Prime 2.2 program, whose ceiling limit is running out. The new blanket purchase agreements were awarded under the General Services Administration's Schedule 70.

Under Prime 3.2, the companies will compete for task orders to provide global IT and communications support not only to USAID, but also to its foreign affairs partners including the State Department and the Peace Corps in the United States, developing countries and unstable international areas.

These services may include systems integration, network engineering and management, and worldwide voice and data communications. They also may involve software distribution, customer assistance services and the analysis and implementation of emerging technologies.

"It really expands and enhances the USAID and State Department partnership and becomes a principle mechanism for them to realize a worldwide foreign affairs IT infrastructure," said Tim Atkin, vice president of SRA's civil sector business.

SRA of Fairfax, Va., is the single prime contractor on the existing Prime 2.2 vehicle, and Northrop Grumman IT is a subcontractor. The ceiling on this contract is about $326 million. Under that contract, SRA provides full life-cycle support for USAID, including software application development and business systems modernization, Atkin said. The company also does network and operations infrastructure work that will likely expand under the follow-on contract, he said.

"Prime 3.2 really becomes focused on IT infrastructure and telecommunications operations for USAID, the State Department and other partners," Atkins said. It lets the agencies use the contract mechanism to identify areas where they can integrate common functions and information resources management activities, he said.

SRA also recently won a five-year, $525 million contract to assist the U.S. government to support USAID's Office of Economic Growth, Agriculture and Trade in its efforts to establish a mechanism by which it can deliver information and communication technology support for development across the agency.

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