Everybody knew that Amazon would never sit and enjoy the show ft. Microsoft, after losing the JEDI contract.
As per the Washington Post, Amazon announced on Thursday that they had filed a protest under seal in federal court on Nov. 8. The protest came after Pentagon awarded the controversial JEDI contract to Microsoft. This comes as another wrench in the long-running procurement battle.
As per the Federal Times report, “We feel pretty strongly that it wasn’t adjudicated fairly,” Jassy said to FOX. “I think that if you do any thorough, apples-to-apples, objective comparison of AWS versus Microsoft, you don’t come out deciding that they’re comparable platforms. Most of our customers will tell us that we’re about 24 months ahead of Microsoft in functionality and maturity.”
Follow the timeline of the contract here: JEDI Contract – What really happened?
JEDI deal doesn’t seem to settle
The deal initiated two years ago to transform the Department of Defense‘s (DOD) approach to adopt cloud technology. After two years, the JEDI deal is now in headlines with various bid protests, multiple amendments in the contracts, political influence like President Donald Trump’s intervention, and Microsoft winning the deal. The objective of the deal seems to lose somewhere even before it can be implemented.
Amazon may have filed its protest under the seal with U.S. Court of Federal claims, but will still need to file a formal protest and layout its arguments in detail.
As per the US Federal acquisition laws, politicians, including the president, cannot influence the procurement process.
If you recall earlier protests, Oracle also sued the DOD and Amazon with the arguments that the procurement process is biased and will most likely go to Amazon. This protest came after Oracle was eliminated in the earlier phase of the competition.
Amazon refers to Pentagon’s decision an un-mistakable bias
“AWS is uniquely experienced and qualified to provide the critical technology the U.S. military needs, and remains committed to supporting the DoD’s modernization efforts.” Amazon spokesman Drew Herdener said in an emailed statement to FOX Business. “We also believe it’s critical for our country that the government and its elected leaders administer procurements objectively and in a manner that is free from political influence. Numerous aspects of the JEDI evaluation process contained clear deficiencies, errors, and unmistakable bias– and it’s important that these matters be examined and rectified.”
The statement depicts that Amazon is not at all content with the decision. Amazon asks the judicial system to review the political influence in Pentagon’s decision to award the JEDI contract to Microsoft.
“I am confident it was conducted freely and fairly, without any type of outside influence,” Mark Esper told a news conference in Seoul.
In response to the mail, DOD Spokeswoman Elissa Smith said, “We will not speculate on potential litigation.” On the other hand, Microsoft did not provide any comment.
Amazon’s abilities made them the frontrunner
Amazon’s rage can be justified as losing the deal came as the biggest disappointment, moreover, a set back for a cloud leader.
Not to forget that Amazon is the only company to hold Impact Level 6 – the Defense Department’s highest-level security certification. On the other hand, Microsoft said to make a huge improvement on the certificate; and will manage to complete all the requirements till the implementation of the JEDI deal.
According to Gartner, Amazon holds a 48% market share as the commercial cloud-computing leader. Microsoft is at the second spot, with a 15.5% share. The difference is huge, and this is what disturbs the peace of mind for Amazon.
Suggested Read: AWS vs Azure: Which cloud is better for all your needs?
If a company loses a contract from such a leading position, there are all the reasons to believe that there is something fishy. It will be interesting to see how the government will respond to the protest and what will be its impact on the DoD’s cloud transformation with JEDI.