Government Entities Face An eProcurement Wake-Up Call

pymnts | March 26, 2020

The U.S. economy has never seen a clearer picture of the consequences of friction in government procurement practices than it is witnessing right now. Earlier this week, The Washington Post described the current state of medical supplies procurement as “chaos,” and despite a surge in private sector companies stepping forward to volunteer their services, adjust supply chains and connect governments with necessary products, state-level officials said a lack of clarity into available inventory, rising costs linked to spiked demand, and an overall sense of disorganization are preventing the flow of supplies from getting to where they need to go. COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, could prove to become a catalyst for digitization in government procurement operations, according to Mark Eigenbauer, president of BidNet.

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Flood Recovery Home Access Program. This video is about Boulder County's Flood Recovery Home Access Program. Boulder County is working to improve the community’s resilience to high water and flooding events by ensuring that undersized and unsafe water-crossing structures are in compliance with Boulder County Code. There may be financial assistance available to help homeowners repair and properly permit accesses through the Home Access Program, funded by Community Development Block Grant- Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR).

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Flood Recovery Home Access Program. This video is about Boulder County's Flood Recovery Home Access Program. Boulder County is working to improve the community’s resilience to high water and flooding events by ensuring that undersized and unsafe water-crossing structures are in compliance with Boulder County Code. There may be financial assistance available to help homeowners repair and properly permit accesses through the Home Access Program, funded by Community Development Block Grant- Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR).

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GOVERNMENT BUSINESS

U.S. Department of Defense Awards $50 Million Contract to Kodiak Robotics for Autonomous U.S. Army Ground Reconnaissance Vehicles

Kodiak Robotics | December 07, 2022

Kodiak Robotics, Inc., a leading self-driving trucking company, today announced it has been awarded a $49.9 million, 24-month United States Department of Defense (DoD) agreement to help automate future U.S. Army ground vehicles led by the Army's Robotic Combat Vehicle (RCV) program. This effort will be in support of vehicles designed for reconnaissance, surveillance, and other high-risk missions. Through this award, which started in October 2022 and was awarded by DoD's Defense Innovation Unit (DIU) on behalf of the Army's RCV program office, Kodiak will leverage its commercial self-driving software to develop, test and deploy autonomous capabilities for driverless vehicles that further strengthen national security. Kodiak will develop autonomous vehicle technology for the Army to navigate complex terrain, diverse operational conditions and GPS-challenged environments, while also providing the Army the ability to remotely operate vehicles when necessary. Wartime is extraordinarily complex with high-risk challenges that often result in troops operating near or behind enemy lines. Deploying autonomous vehicles to perform such critical and dangerous tasks has the potential to significantly reduce the risk to troops, while giving them greater access to the information they need in the field. Additionally, the remote driving capabilities Kodiak will develop for the Army will increase the flexibility of these autonomous vehicles, while further reducing risk for soldiers. The project will also provide a technical pipeline that will enable the rapid development and deployment of new autonomous vehicle technologies as they become commercially available. "I started Kodiak because I believe autonomous technology can save lives, and helping the U.S. Army develop driverless vehicles for the most challenging operating environments fits perfectly with that goal, We are proud to have the opportunity to leverage our cutting-edge self-driving technology for defense applications, and believe our work with DIU and the U.S. Army will both help strengthen national security and hasten our path to commercial deployment. We owe a debt of gratitude to the servicemen and women who step into harm's way to keep us safe; keeping them safe in return is an honor we take seriously." -Don Burnette, founder and CEO, Kodiak Robotics. Kodiak Robotics was the only autonomous vehicle company initially selected for this award out of 33 submissions, thanks to its proven leadership in autonomous systems development and commercialization, as well as its intense focus on safety. In the first year of this effort, Kodiak will build upon its core competency by applying its robust autonomous software stack for Army specific use cases, including future Army vehicles. In year two, the company will implement its autonomous driving system on off-road vehicles capable of traversing complex terrain and operating remotely in unpredictable and austere conditions. DIU focuses exclusively on adopting and scaling technologies developed by commercial partners to help strengthen U.S. national security by solving critical field challenges faced by the U.S. military. DIU works to identify innovations in six key technology areas where the commercial sector is operating at the leading edge: artificial intelligence, autonomy, cyber, energy, human systems, and space. While Kodiak Robotics will continue to focus on its core business of building autonomous trucks for use in commercial applications, this project serves as an important extension that helps to propel its innovations forward. This project shows that Kodiak's core technology has multiple use cases, laying the groundwork for future expansion beyond long-haul trucking. About Kodiak Robotics, Inc: Kodiak Robotics, Inc. was founded in 2018 to develop autonomous technology that carries freight forward — so people, partners, and the planet thrive. The company is developing an industry-leading technology stack purpose-built specifically for long-haul trucks, making the freight industry safer and more efficient. Kodiak's unique modular hardware approach integrates sensors into a streamlined sensor-pod structure that optimizes for perception, scalability, and maintainability. The company delivers freight daily for its customers across the South, operating autonomously on the highway portions of the routes.

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EMERGING TECHNOLOGY

IBM to Acquire Octo

IBM | December 08, 2022

IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced an agreement to acquire Octo, a U.S.-based IT modernization and digital transformation services provider exclusively serving the U.S. federal government, including defense, health, and civilian agencies. IBM's acquisition of Octo establishes one of the largest digital transformation partners to the federal government. Upon the close of the acquisition, Octo's approximately 1,500 employees will join IBM Consulting's U.S. public and federal market organization. Octo will be IBM's eighth acquisition of 2022. Since Arvind Krishna became CEO of IBM in April 2020, IBM has acquired more than 25 companies, bolstering its hybrid cloud and artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities. Today's news builds on prior IBM Consulting acquisitions, including Dialexa, Neudesic, and Taos. Federal government agencies face significant challenges including technology skills shortages, rebuilding of U.S. domestic supply chains and more demand for citizen services. To address these complex challenges, agencies need an industry partner to help them navigate a scalable path to IT modernization with the power to leverage emerging technologies and applications, optimize costs and operational efficiencies, and improve security. The convergence of new hybrid cloud and AI technologies enables government to deliver rapid improvements and adapt to unprecedented challenges. The acquisition of Reston, Va.-based Octo will complement IBM's existing strengths in IT modernization and digital transformation, enhancing its ability to support federal agencies with a flexible, modern approach to digital transformation and growing IBM Consulting's public and federal market organization to 4,200 highly-skilled employees. With a proven track record of enabling rapid IT modernization and seamless citizen engagement, Octo also brings deep federal mission experience, as well as certifications in the technologies most used across the federal government. "Governments require agility and resiliency to meet the evolving needs of citizens directly and in real time," said John Granger, Senior Vice President of IBM Consulting. "The combination of Octo's highly qualified and respected team with IBM's consulting expertise, technical capabilities and strategic partner ecosystem will enable federal clients to transform faster and better serve citizens." Building on a shared commitment to co-creation, oLabs, Octo's 14,000 square foot innovation center with in-house computing capability, expands IBM's ability to work collaboratively with federal agencies to rapidly prototype emerging technology solutions – enabling greater impact for federal agencies and the people they serve. "Octo was founded on the belief that digital transformation could be delivered at scale to modernize the federal government's approach to today's most pressing challenges – from public healthcare to national security, to defense and intelligence," said Mehul Sanghani, Chief Executive Officer of Octo. "Today, we are excited to join forces with IBM to continue to deliver these digital transformation capabilities with greater reach and scale." IBM's acquisition of Octo from Arlington Capital Partners is expected to close in the fourth quarter of this year and is subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory clearances. Financial details of the deal were not disclosed. About IBM IBM is a leading provider of global hybrid cloud and AI, and consulting expertise. We help clients in more than 175 countries capitalize on insights from their data, streamline business processes, reduce costs and gain the competitive edge in their industries. More than 4,000 government and corporate entities in critical infrastructure areas such as financial services, telecommunications and healthcare rely on IBM's hybrid cloud platform and Red Hat OpenShift to affect their digital transformations quickly, efficiently and securely. IBM's breakthrough innovations in AI, quantum computing, industry-specific cloud solutions and consulting deliver open and flexible options to our clients. All of this is backed by IBM's legendary commitment to trust, transparency, responsibility, inclusivity and service. Visit www.ibm.com for more information.

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EMERGING TECHNOLOGY,GOVERNMENT BUSINESS,CYBERSECURITY

Data Protection and Backup Solutions in AWS Marketplace by Carahsoft

Carahsoft | January 05, 2023

Carahsoft Technology Corp., the government's trusted IT solutions provider, is now an AWS Federal Distributor for Dell Technologies Data Protection solutions in the AWS Marketplace, an organized digital catalog that customers can use to buy, find, manage, and deploy third-party data, software, and services to build solutions and run businesses on Amazon Web Services (AWS). Customers in the U.S. public sector have easy access, flexible pricing terms, streamlined billing, rapid deployment, and license management thanks to AWS Marketplace. The list consists of Dell data protection options such as Dell APEX Backup Services, Dell PowerProtect Data Manager, and Dell PowerProtect Cyber Recovery. Carahsoft is a Dell Federal Distributor, AWS Marketplace Partner, and AWS Federal Distributor for Data Protection solutions such as: Dell APEX Backup Services Dell PowerProtect Data Manager Dell PowerProtect Cyber Recovery Carahsoft, as a Dell Federal Distributor, collaborates with a variety of AWS Distributors, Dell-certified resellers, and managed service providers to create a comprehensive cloud solution that includes professional, migration, and support services, as well as AWS products and services. Carahsoft's technology portfolio provides the means to buy a vast array of cloud-based solutions that securely facilitate cloud-based modernization. Carahsoft and its resellers continue to be committed to enabling government clients with the extensive capabilities of Dell's solutions. With Dell Data Protection Solutions and Amazon Web Services (AWS), U.S. federal customers now have an extra option to support government procurement. About Carahsoft Carahsoft is the most trusted provider of government IT solutions, combining technological knowledge with a comprehensive grasp of the government procurement process, which assists public sector enterprises in selecting and implementing the most cost-effective solution. Carahsoft is the largest government partner, operating as the government's master aggregator for many of its best-of-breed suppliers and delivering value for a vast ecosystem of system integrators, IT manufacturers, resellers, and consultancy partners.

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