Telstra and NetStar have snagged the first stage of the NSW State Government's lucrative Government Network Services (GNS) in a networking contract with Nortel Networks.
The deal saw Nortel edge out industry rivals, and most notably router specialist Cisco, to deploy 132 of its ARN routers at Department of Corrective Services sites across the state including jails and administration centres.
The Government awarded Telstra the prime contractor slot with NetStar sub-contracted to provide integration and consulting services, a NetStar spokesperson said. "It shows we can work well with Telstra," he said.
The hotly contested deal has been the subject of industry discussion for many months. NetStar is currently conducting an exhaustive audit of all the Department's sites, which has seen network consultants deployed to a number of metropolitan and regional locations. The spokesperson estimated the rollout will take around three months.
The contract is estimated to be worth over $1 million to NetStar, but the spokesperson explained that figure could rise after the audit is complete.
One of the auditors in contact with ARN reports many of the regional sites currently have insufficient facilities to house the networking equipment, but is confident the installations will still go ahead without great difficulty.
Gary Starr, Nortel Networks' director of channels, said he expects the next round of GNS tenders to be equally aggressive. "It's an exciting win for us because it's in the router space," he said. "We want to replicate it throughout the NSW State Government."
Cisco was not available for comment by ARN's deadline last Friday.