Foreign Office cancels global connectivity procurement

Department opts not to award framework deal worth up to £350m after near-draw between two bidders

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The Foreign Office has cancelled the award of a framework voice and data connectivity deal with an estimated value of between £75m and £350m.

The five-year contract, carried out in association with the Department for International Development and the British Council, would have provided connectivity services to about 550 sites in 170 countries, connecting UK head offices to embassies, consulates and other overseas offices.

“Following a procurement process for global telecommunications services, the outcome between the first and second placed bidders was deemed to be so close that it was decided not to award a contract from the procurement,” the Foreign Office told PublicTechnology.

“We are now undertaking a review of our technology and commercial strategies before deciding how to come back out to market for these services.”

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When the procurement was announced in December 2017, the department said it was seeking one or more suppliers to provide “global, resilient, flexible, and scalable enterprise-wide voice and data connectivity services”, with work planned to start on 1 September 2018.

The contract would have included connectivity services such as wide area and local area networks, secure internet gateways and integration services. The supplier would have been expected to work with a separate provider of voice and video services.

PublicTechnology staff

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