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Nick Wakeman

Accenture drops protest of $142M Army contract

Accenture has decided to walk away from a $142 million contract where the company was the incumbent contractor after both a corrective action and a denied protest.

Accenture first lost the contract to provide sustainment services for the Army General Fund Enterprise Business System in December 2016 to IBM Corp. In early January, Accenture filed its protest with the Government Accountability Office.

The Army soon decided to take a corrective action to look at some of the issues Accenture raised in its protest.

The Army said it would investigate Accenture’s claim that IBM had an organizational conflict of interest. The Army also said it would get a clarification from Accenture about parts of its proposal.

Accenture filed another protest in February to challenge the scope of the corrective action. For one thing, the company wanted the Army to reopen discussions in a more substantial move than a clarification.

On May 30, GAO denied that protest and the Army moved ahead with its corrective action.

At some point in August or early September, the Army again stood by its decision to award the contract to IBM. Then Accenture filed a new protest Sept. 11.

But on Sept. 29, Accenture withdrew the protest even before the Army had filed a response.

Accenture declined to comment on why they made that decision.

IBM didn’t have a lot to say either. “The stop-work order in effect during the protest, has been lifted, and we’re ready to get to work,” Joe Cubba, vice president of defense and intelligence in IBM’s Global Business Services group, told Washington Technology.

He said the company expects the transition from Accenture to IBM to be complete by April 1.

After all this, it begs the question of why Accenture fought so hard and then walked away from its last shot to win back the work.

But as I said, they declined to comment and the Army Materiel Command hasn’t been forthcoming either.

Posted by Nick Wakeman on Oct 06, 2017 at 9:17 AM

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