Crown Hosting Data Centres (CHDC) is likely to ‘win’ the government hosting framework contract worth up to £250 million.
The UK Government’s Cabinet Office will negotiate a new agreement for hosting services for the public sector but will almost certainly award the CHDC, which it partly owns with Ark Data Centres under a public-private joint venture, set up in 2015. Under this JV, CHDC has 25% ownership by the Cabinet Office and Ark Data Centres Ltd, owns the remaining 75%.
Under an ex-ante transparency notice (VEAT), the Crown Commercial Service (CCS) posted details of the Crown Hosting II procurement, for non residential properly leasing and provision of associated products and services for the ICT of its public-sector customers.The Crown Commercial Services has reviewed the contract requirements and concluded that a direct award to the supplier is permissible because the CHDC is the only supplier capable of meeting the high-security classification requirements and support services critical to the national interest.
Under regulation 32(2)(b)(ii) of the PCR 2015, this contract award is allowed without prior publication where there is no competition because of specialist technical reasons.
The security aspect is important here, and it’s good to see the Government protect key, critical data stores. While the UK government’s own Cloud First Policy, suggests public sector customers should move away from data centres and use public cloud bases services, clearly for high security ,data stores such as this, there are exceptions.
If you’d like to talk to us about your government data needs, get in touch.