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November 2, 2020

AWS scoops three-year cloud deal with UK government

By Robert Scammell

Amazon Web Services (AWS) has announced an agreement with the UK government that will increase public sector adoption of cloud computing.

The three-year memorandum of understating between AWS and the Crown Commercial Service (CCS), the government’s procurement agency, means that participating UK government and public sector organisations will be treated as a single client, instead of separate public entities negotiating separate cloud computing contracts.

AWS – the largest cloud provider – said this will provide “greater cost savings” for public sector cloud deployment.

It will be available in two tiers, with the first available to businesses at the early stages of their cloud projects, while the second tier is for those looking to expand existing cloud initiatives.

It forms part of the government’s wider ‘cloud-first’ policy.

As part of the agreement, called the ‘One Government Value Agreement’, AWS will establish a new digital skills fund. This will train over 6,000 civil servants in cloud computing, with no direct cost to the government.

Simon Tse, chief executive of the Crown Commercial Service, said: “CCS provides commercial agreements which help organisations across the entire public sector save time and money on buying everyday goods and services. This agreement with AWS demonstrates excellent value for the public sector organisations we serve, and supports them in their drive to improve services for citizens across the UK.”

The memorandum of understanding will also give qualified members of the AWS Partner Network, an initiative for companies using AWS to build technology solutions and services, access to AWS services.

So far, more than 150 government contractors have used AWS to provide £1.3bn in services to the government.

One of those companies is IT firm Softcat. Anthony Cowen, sales director at Softcat, said:

“Softcat is delighted to be able to offer the OGVA to Public Sector customers. Innovation and digital transformation has never been more important to UK Public Sector organisations than it is today. The OGVA will really help us to support customers to innovate by providing AWS technologies via a national agreement, with the improved cost efficiency that brings. The combination of AWS working with a partner like Softcat will help Public Sector customers to accelerate their digital transformation initiatives.”

“Governments, education, healthcare, and nonprofit customers across the UK are already delivering some of the world’s most exciting innovations, enabled by the AWS Cloud,” said Chris Hayman, director of UK public sector at AWS.

“This new agreement will provide a technical skills boost to those working in the public sector, allow smaller suppliers more access to government contracts by supporting a more fair and diverse marketplace, and deliver significant savings to public sector organisations.”

In its most recent quarterly results, AWS reported revenues of $11.6bn.


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