The US department of defense has a massive budget that is well north of the GDPs of all but the most massive countries in the world. Private business concerns, including both Microsoft and Amazon have been vying for a slice of government defense contracts and now, it seems like the Redmond giant has landed itself a big one.
As per an announcement by the US Department of Defense (DOD), Microsoft has received its Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) cloud contract, which is worth a massive $10 billion, disbursed over over a period of 10 years. Under the terms of the contract, Microsoft will provide infrastructure and platform services for the Pentagon, including both it’s business and mission operations.
Speaking on the topic, DOD Chief Information Officer Dana Deasy said:
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.
Interestingly, Amazon, who was the other choice, appears to be very surprised by the fact that they were passed over. Speaking with TechCrunch, a spokesperson said:
We’re surprised about this conclusion. AWS is the clear leader in cloud computing, and a detailed assessment purely on the comparative offerings clearly lead to a different conclusion. We remain deeply committed to continuing to innovate for the new digital battlefield where security, efficiency, resiliency, and scalability of resources can be the difference between success and failure.
Well, obviously Pentagon thought otherwise.
Interestingly, Microsoft employees have been protesting against Microsoft’s attempts to cozy up to the US government, and obtain deals from it. In fact, they have been protesting minor contracts with values well under a quarter of a million. As such, it would be interesting to view their take on this multi-billion dollar deal.