Marine Corps picks 10 companies to supply as much as $775 million in computer equipment over next five years

QUANTICO, Va., 10 May 2012. U.S. Marine Corps leaders are choosing 10 information technology (IT) companies to compete for contracts collectively worth as much as $775 million over the next three to five years to provide commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) military computer equipment as part of the Marine Corps Common Hardware Suite (MCCHS) program, which the Marine Corp put in place to meet the service's IT hardware requirements.

Officials of the Marine Corps Systems Command in Quantico, Va., identified the 10 MCCHS equipment providers on Tuesday, which will supply rugged and commercial-grade laptop and tablet computers, computer workstations, and servers for Marine Corps use within the United States and during overseas military operations.

The 10 MCCHS providers are Blue Tech Inc. in San Diego; CDW-G in Vernon Hills, Ill.; Countertrade Products Inc. in Arvada, Colo.; Dell Inc. in Round Rock, Texas; GTSI Corp. in Herndon, Va.; Intelligent Decisions Inc. in Ashburn, Va.; Iron Bow Technologies in Chantilly, Va.; a team of Integration Technologies Group Inc. (ITG) in Falls Church, Va., and ePlus Inc. in Herndon, Va.; NCS Technologies Inc. in Gainesville, Va.; and World Wide Technology Inc. in St. Louis.

These companies will bid on Marine Corps computer buys over the next three years, with two potential additional years possible. The companies will provide COTS computer systems, including ruggedized and non-ruggedized desktops and laptops, as well as servers and related computer equipment and accessories. Each of the 10 MCCHS suppliers received an indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity, multiple-award contract.

MCCHS equipment, will provide standardized computing equipment and worldwide integrated logistics support for Marine Corps and U.S. Navy operating forces at the lowest possible cost through centralized procurement, Marine Corps officials say.

The MCCHS program over the next five years could purchase as many as 141,838 general-purpose workstations, 103,792 general purpose laptop computers, 20,345 high-performance laptop computers, 20,235 all-in-one computers, 15,860 netbook computers, 15,860 light-weight laptop computers, 15,860 slate computers, 7,880 ruggedized tablet computers, 7,220 commercial-grade tablet computers, 4,760 rugged slate computers, 3,200 lightweight laptop computers, 3,145 semi-ruggedized touchscreen laptop computers, 2,300 departmental 3U and 4U rack-mount servers 1,595 deployable 1U rack-mount servers, 1,560 entry 2U rack-mount servers, 885 high-performance workstations, 520 1U workstations, 200 specialty blade 10U rack-mount servers, and 45 ruggedized ultra-mobile touchscreen PCs.

The MCCHS program calls for some specialization in COTS computing equipment to meet military needs. For example, no item may contain embedded Bluetooth, and must provide the ability to disable wireless that transmits or receives any information over RF signals.

In addition, no device may have firmware based tracking or anti-theft software, and all laptop computers must have a Trusted Platform Module (TPM), version 1.2 or greater. MCCHS equipment users also must be able to disable any internal microphones, and no device may contain a built-in camera or any other imaging devices.

For more information contact the Marine Corps Systems Command online at www.marines.mil/unit/marcorsyscom.

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