Judge temporarily blocks multibillion-dollar JEDI contract win for Microsoft following Amazon lawsuit

Judge temporarily blocks multibillion-dollar JEDI contract win for Microsoft following Amazon lawsuit

13 Feb    Finance News

Amazon.com Inc. has won a temporary restraining order from a federal court Thursday to block Microsoft Corp.’s award of a $10 billion Pentagon cloud-computing contract.

CNBC first reported on Thursday’s injunction.

Amazon AMZN, -0.20%  , which lost out on the bitterly disputed deal, filed a lawsuit last month asking the court to halt Microsoft’s MSFT, -0.42%  work on the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure contract. Amazon Web Services alleged the yearslong evaluation process included “clear deficiencies, errors and unmistakable bias.”

Shares of Amazon and Microsoft were both slightly down in late-session trading.

“While we are disappointed with the additional delay, we believe that we will ultimately be able to move forward with the work to make sure those who serve our country can access the new technology they urgently require,” Microsoft spokesman Frank X. Shaw said in a statement. “We have confidence in the Department of Defense, and we believe the facts will show they ran a detailed, thorough and fair process in determining the needs of the warfighter were best met by Microsoft.”

Amazon was not immediately available for comment on Thursday’s injunction.

Amazon upped the legal ante earlier this week in unsealed court documents that request the depositions of President Donald Trump, Defense Secretary Mark Esper, and former Defense Secretary James Mattis, whom it believes were biased in the award of JEDI to Microsoft.

See also: Amazon wants Trump, Esper to testify in fight for $10 billion Pentagon deal

Amazon contended in its latest filing that the Pentagon’s rationale for awarding the contract to Microsoft left out “crucial information and details that led to this flawed and potentially detrimental decision regarding DoD’s future cloud infrastructure.”

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“President Trump has repeatedly demonstrated his willingness to use his position as President and Commander in Chief to interfere with government functions – including federal procurements – to advance his personal agenda,” AWS said in a statement to MarketWatch on Monday.

Additionally, AWS has claimed Trump launched “behind-the-scenes attacks” against the company, whose chief executive, Jeff Bezos, is a political target of the president. Bezos also owns the Washington Post, which Trump has accused of slanted coverage of his administration.

AWS has called for the Defense Department to terminate the award and conduct another review of the submitted proposals.

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