Amazon sues Pentagon over decision awarding $10B cloud contract to Microsoft

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Amazon Web Services (AWS) is challenging the decision of the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) to award a major cloud contract to Microsoft.

In October, the Pentagon announced that Microsoft won the $10 billion Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) cloud contract to address its critical and unmet warfighter requirements for modern cloud infrastructure.

“The acquisition process was conducted in accordance with applicable laws and regulations. The process cleared review by the GAO and Court of Federal Claims,” said Pentagon in its announcement.

At the time, an Amazon 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.”

Amazon claims Pentagon’s evaluation process contained “unmistakable bias”

On Friday, a spokesperson for Amazon told media entities that the Pentagon’s evaluation process “contained clear deficiencies, errors, and unmistakable bias” for awarding the JEDI cloud contract to Microsoft.

The spokesperson said AWS “is uniquely experienced and qualified to provide the critical technology the U.S. military needs. 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.”

Amazon appears to suggest that President Donald Trump had influence in the bidding process. Trump has been very vocal about his repugnance at Amazon and its founder and CEO Jeff Bezos, who also owns The Washington Post.

In a related filing, Amazon included video exhibits of the President expressing his opposition to awarding the JEDI contract to it. The company also requested a “protective order” citing the reason that its lawsuit included sensitive and proprietary information, as well as trade secrets and confidential financial information that “would cause either party severe competitive harm” if released to the public.