The Last Jedi? After two years of battle with the competition, Microsoft won the lucrative JEDI contract that will see the company provide cloud computing services to the US Department of Defense.
It beat out Amazon, the only remaining competitor, after Google dropped out of the race last year citing AI principles. The process itself has been anything but smooth sailing, with both IBM and Oracle raising issues over the lack of fair treatment and evaluation consistently.
Dubbed the Jedi Contract, this general-purpose enterprise deal could be worth $10 billion over the next ten years, as the agency moves in to replace legacy systems.
The DoD confirmed the deal in a statement, with CIO Dean Deasy, saying:
“The National Defense Strategy dictates that we must improve the speed and effectiveness with which we develop and deploy modernized technical capabilities to our women and men in uniform. The DOD Digital Modernization Strategy was created to support this imperative. This award is an important step in execution of the Digital Modernization Strategy.”
Microsoft’s share prices have risen by more than 3% in after-hours trading, on the back of this news.
The JEDI contract is part of a wider technology overhaul that Pentagon has overtaken to modernize its systems. Microsoft aims to deliver a product that gives the military better access to data and the cloud from battlefields and other remote areas.
The DoD crafted the Digital Modernization Strategy to support this imperative, and the awarding of this high-profile contract to Microsoft is an important step in execution this tactic.
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