The Federal Government has nominated an interim panel of five datacentre suppliers to provide services under its datacentre facilities and services contract.
Canberra Data Centres, Fujitsu, Global Switch Property, Harbour MSP and Polaris Data Centres are the five successful bidders under the Department of Finance and Regulation’s Express of Interest Tender, which was published in late May. The tender stemmed from the recent Gershon review into the Government’s ICT procurement policies and recommendation that it consolidate all datacentre facilities into a centralised strategy. The interim panel runs until March 2010.
According to the Gershon review, the absence of a whole-of-government approach to datacentres could cost up to $1 billion over 15 years.
Under the arrangement, all parties must provide between 1000-2000m of available floor space both in Canberra and across other locations; be available for immediate fit-out; and are both energy efficient and purpose-built.
In a statement, department minister, Lindsay Tanner, said its whole-of-government strategy was well underway and flagged a report would be released by the end of the year.
“The Government has consulted widely with industry in the development of this strategy and we are confident that through it, we will achieve further efficiencies and improve our ability to provide reliable and sustainable services,” he stated.
For Harbour MSP, the panel arrangement represents its first foray into the government sector. The company largely deals with mid-tier enterprises across the IT and software markets and provides managed services solutions in conjunction with its investment partner, Frontline Systems.
While the significance of being on the panel is still unclear, commercial director, Andrew Hardy, expected work would be quickly released.
“When the tender came out it was open to all datacentre providers, so we assessed it and saw value in replying,” he said. “We expect things will start happening fairly quickly – a few agencies are having real problems around the datacentre and have urgent requirements to fulfil.”
Harbour was also waiting for more details on whether it would be required to deliver straight co-location hosting, or ramp up its resources for more comprehensive managed services, Hardy said. In the meantime, the company is launching into the international arena with a new facility in Singapore.