Miller: Microsoft Beats Amazon to Pentagon Contract … All Hell Breaks Loose

$10B Defense Contract Goes to Microsoft, to Amazon's Surprise

Microsoft has beaten Amazon to the Pentagon's $10 billion cloud computing contract

Amazon's bid drew criticism from its rivals and US President Donald Trump. "The DOD Digital Modernization Strategy was created to support this imperative".

It could go to the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) - a legislative branch of the government that offers auditing services, which could offer an immediate stay.

This contract win has the potential to change the cloud computing landscape over the next decade. It's a shocker to Amazon and Bezos to lose it.

Trump has always been at odds with Amazon chief executive officer Jeff Bezos, who own the Washington Post, which Trump claims has treated him unfairly in its coverage. The department plans additional contracts for cloud services and complementary migration and integration solutions necessary to achieve successful cloud adoption for more effective execution of its cloud strategy, as per a press release by the department. He has attacked the Washington Post for its coverage of him, conflating the newspaper with Amazon's interests, accusing it of publishing "fake news" and operating as a "lobbyist newspaper" for the company. "What went along with this contract is cache".

Amazon is considering its options for how to move forward following the decision to award a massive government contract to its competitor, Microsoft, according to a source familiar with the situation. Such an action could put an automatic stay on the procurement while more information is gathered.

"Assuming Amazon believes that presidential influence impacted the outcome, if Amazon perceives that there is any chance that, in the foreseeable future, the president may be impeached or choose to resign, they would want DOD to be in a position to re-evaluate proposals or even amend the solicitation", he noted in an email.

Amazon has not commented on how it will proceed.

It was definitely considered early on because of AWS' previous contract with the Central Intelligence Agency back in 2013, and Amazon being certified at the highest existing security clearance level, while Microsoft has been playing catch up.

Meantime, some Microsoft employees are protesting involvement in the military contract, known as the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure, or JEDI, that is meant to bring USA military technology into the modern era. There are a few steps the company would need to take to do that. Amazon declined to say whether it would ask for such a debriefing. AWS has less than 10 days to issue a formal protest and it's unclear how that might materialize.

The actual contract is being handed to Microsoft's smaller business Azure, who has in the a year ago secured deals from Kroger Co and AT&T, but this deal marks a significant step up for the subsidiary.

Eventually, Microsoft and Amazon were the final two bidders after Google dropped out of the JEDI bidding previous year and IBM and Oracle were eliminated.

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