SAP protests over Oracle’s US Air Force contract win

A $128 million logistics contract has been awarded to Oracle, prompting a formal protest from SAP

SAP is challenging the the loss of a multimillion-dollar defence logistics contract to rival Oracle.

Last month, Oracle announced that it had won a US$88.5 million (NZ$128 million) contract to implement the US Air Force Expeditionary Combat Support System (ECSS), beating a number of rivals, including SAP. The project’s aim is to retire approximately 500 legacy systems in favour of a single supply chain management application from Oracle.

On October 28 SAP, in response to losing the business, filed a formal protest with the US Government Accountability Office (GAO). The company filed the complaint through its US-based subsidiary, SAP Public Services.

The protest was filed to the GAO by the company’s legal team, a company spokeswoman says. The Air Force was notified on October 31.

SAP claims the Air Force is not getting the best deal. In a statement released on October 31, the company alleged that, according to the US government’s own evaluation criteria, the ECSS should be a “best value” implementation, meaning the system picked should offer the lowest risk while delivering mission capability.

Meeting those two combined objectives was “significantly more important than price”, SAP says.

In turn, in a written evaluation issued after the contract’s award, the Air Force stated that “SAP far exceeded Oracle in the required mission capability criteria and was rated the lowest-risk offer”.

Steve Peck, president of SAP Public Services, says SAP “firmly believes that the Oracle proposal does not reflect the best value and lowest-risk solution and that the SAP offering is the superior solution for the US Air Force.

“We look forward to a formal review of the process, procedures and selection criteria for this award.”

A GAO spokesman says: “We do not comment until a decision is issued.” Oracle was not available for comment.

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