Amazon asks Court to Pause on Microsoft Azure’s JEDI Pentagon Contract
In the cloud wars Tech companies don’t take rivalry and politics lightly. AWS was the favorite, but perhaps due to an intervention by Trump, Microsoft Azure won the $10 Billion Pentagon contract. The Pentagon selected Microsoft over Amazon for the colossal contract on October 25, 2019.
AWS is protesting. This week AWS wrote, “It’s important that the numerous evaluation errors and blatant political interference that impacted the JEDI award decision be reviewed.”
The Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure, or JEDI, cloud computing contract could be worth up to $10 billion for services rendered over as many as 10 years.
Political Interference Likely Took Place in the Cloud Pentagon Decision
The JEDI project would see the modernization of critical military computer infrastructure via the winning company’s cloud services. It was a huge win for Azure, which has grown in market share in the Cloud especially in the 2018 to 2020 period.
Amazon is suing the Department of Defense (DOD) over allegations that it allowed President Trump to exert “improper influence” over the contract process, ultimately steering the cloud-computing project away from the online retail giant and towards Microsoft.
The conflict of interest is indeed a war of personalities and a sensitive President. Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos has been a constant source of frustration for President Donald Trump. The billionaire executive owns The Washington Post, which Trump regularly criticizes for its coverage of his administration.
AWS was such a huge favorite, with deeper security features, that it was a bit of surprise when Azure won the contact. Oracle had already been crying foul for a while, mostly against Amazon.
The lucrative contract, originally scheduled to be awarded in September 2018, was postponed until Defense Secretary Mark Esper completed a series of thorough reviews of the technology.
For Microsoft it’s business as usual, with the Pentagon contract likely impacting confidence in their market valuation which is now just behind Apple, for 2nd place among Big Tech, the big five GAFMA companies.