On April 28, 2021, the U.S. Court of Federal Claims issued a sealed decision denying the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) and Microsoft’s motions to dismiss Amazon Web Services’ (Amazon) bid protest of the Pentagon’s $10 billion Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) cloud contract. Amazon claims repeated prejudicial errors against Amazon Web Services due to influence from then-President Donald Trump and other high-level government officials aiming to harm Amazon. DOJ and Microsoft failed to convince the Court to dismiss the complaint. The Court’s denial of the motions to dismiss will allow Amazon to continue making its case before the Court, continuing a lengthy legal process that began in late 2019 which could potentially spell the end for the JEDI contract.
In January, the Defense Department (DOD) detailed in a submission to Congress that additional, lengthy litigation “might bring the future of the JEDI cloud contract into question.” Under this scenario, the DOD’s CIO would “reassess the strategy going forward.” The current stay of contract performance leaves the DOD without modernization and cloud services that it considers urgent. As a result, if the legal challenges to the JEDI contract are not resolved soon, DOD may choose another contract vehicle(s) to obtain the critical enterprise-wide, commercial cloud services. We will continue to keep you posted as the battle over the lucrative and high-profile JEDI procurement continues.
For more information on this topic, please contact Lauren Brier, the author of this blog, or a member of PilieroMazza’s Government Contracts and Claims & Appeals practice groups.