Final bidders chosen for UK’s new Emergency Services Network

EE and Telefónica O2 fight it out for the main network contract, while HP and Motorola Solutions wrestle for the network management and user services contract

Final bidders chosen for UK’s new Emergency Services Network

Eight organisations will go forward to the negotiation stage for the three Lots of the UK’s £1.2bn Emergency Services Network (ESN) to submit best and final offers, the Home Office has announced.

Organisations going forward to negotiation include:

Lot 1 – (Delivery Partner) Atkins, KBR, Lockheed Martin and Mott MacDonald

Lot 2 – (User Services) HP and Motorola

Lot 3 – (Mobile Services) EE and Telefónica.

The main part of the contract, Lot 3 - to provide a resilient mobile services network for the police, fire and rescue and ambulance services - sees EE and Telefónicagoing forward to the negotiation stage. Airwave Solutions, UK Broadband Networks and Vodafone are no longer in the running.

The Home Office had no choice when it came to final offers for Lot 2, as HP and Motorola were the only firms to submit a bid. The other three original shortlistees: Airwave, Astrium and CGI IT UK, all decided the risks were too high and refused to bid. 

For Lot 1, the Home Offices has decided to retain all four of the companies which submitted a bid (a fifth shortlistee KPMG LLP decided not to bid). Lot 4, which involved provision of extension network services in remote areas of the UK, for which Arqiva was the only company out of five willing to put in a bid, was scrapped by the Home Office on 14 January 2015 and incorporated into Lot 3.

James Brokenshire, Minister for Security and Immigration, claimed that ESN will provide ‘significant cost savings for the taxpayer’ and ‘provide a system which is better and smarter while also saving the emergency services around £1bn over the next 15 years’.

The new services will replace the existing TETRA two-way radio system run by private firm Airwave from 2017 as the current contracts expire. The idea is that ESN will be run on a commercial mobile network, which will be ‘enhanced’ to meet mission critical standards to deliver both voice and broadband data services. 


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