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By Nick Wakeman

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Nick Wakeman

Will ITES-3H be protest free?

When the Army announced the 17 winners of $5 billion ITES-3H contract, they also mentioned there were 50 bidders competing for the award.

That gives the impression that there are 33 disappointed companies this week. You would think that there would be a few protester from the pool.

But what the Army failed to mention and what sources are telling me is that the Army made awards to all of the bidders who survived the downselect process from phase one of the competition to phase two.

The Army was hit with 19 protests that were filed at the Government Accountability Office. Four of those protestors – Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Telos and Dynamics Systems – were allowed back into the competition by the Army.

Other protestors, including MicroTech, one of the eventual winners, went onto the Court of Federal Claims to argue that they were treated unfairly. MicroTech was the only company to prevail in those cases and the Army agreed to take another look at its proposal.

The court denied motions by Red River Computer Co. and FCN Inc.

The other companies who lost their protests at GAO did not file with the court and let GAO’s decision stand.

It looks like once the Army got through the GAO and then Court of Federal Claims litigation, it had its pool of competitors for phase two and has given awards to all of those companies.

I’ve asked the Army for the number of companies that were competing in phase two, but they declined to comment.

But other sources have stepped forward and said that all indications are that once the bidders made it to phase two that they had secured a spot on the contract

Which begs the question, why the Army took so long to make its final awards if in essence it had all of its winners after phase one?

If what I’m being told holds, and no new protests are filed, the Army likely will begin issuing task orders under ITES-3H in early April.

Posted by Nick Wakeman on Feb 26, 2016 at 9:26 AM

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