Input downplays Alliant prospects

While the 29 contractors that earned spots on the Alliant governmentwide acquisition contract celebrate their wins, research firm Input Inc. is pouring a bucket of cold water on the party.

The General Services Administration set a ceiling of $50 billion for the 10-year contract, but Input analysts believe that it will actually generate far less business, according to a report issued today.

Input's report suggests that many agencies will prefer to use their own contracts rather than the GSA vehicle. The Reston, Va.-based firm based that conclusion partly on recent experience.

"While overall contract vehicle spending nearly doubled over the last five years, GSA's contract vehicles have been in decline as a percentage of the overall market," said John Slye, manager of federal industry analysis for Input. "When all is said and done, we think Alliant will do well if it achieves $7.5 billion in value."

Input pointed to the combined performance of Millennia and Answer, two existing GWACs that Alliant will eventually replace. The two contracts together showed steady growth from $514 million in fiscal 2002 to $729 million in 2005, with a slight dip in 2003 to $505 million. But in fiscal 2006, the contract revenues dropped to $574 million, which Input attributed partly to big-spending agencies, including the Defense and Homeland Security departments, shifting some of their contract spending to internal acquisition programs.

"The largest agencies are trying hard to get control over their acquisition costs and leverage existing contract staff," Slye said. "So the smaller agencies may be Alliant's prime customer base."

About the Author

Technology journalist Michael Hardy is a former FCW editor.

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