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UK government negotiates new comms framework

Could be worth £170m to everyone except 3

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The Office of Government Commerce contracts arm, OGCbuying.solutions, has negotiated new contracts with communications suppliers that could save public-sector organisations £40m.

The deals, which could be worth £170m a year over the next four years, provide pre-authored paperwork that public-sector bodies can use to set up contracts with pre-vetted suppliers, at prices negotiated based on volume discounts.

For mobile voice and data it's the usual suspects; BT plus all the mobile operators - with the notable exception, for some reason, of 3. Wide-area paging and SMS delivery contains no great surprises, Vodafone, PageOne, HTK, 2ergo and Orange - BT seem to have missed a trick on that one.

When it comes to bespoke mobile BT was more on the ball, and is joined by Vodafone, Orange, AMT-SYBEX and Detica.

Public sector bodies aren't required to use the preferred suppliers or framework, but they should be able to get better prices and reduce the paperwork if they do. By including all the major companies in each area the chances of someone wanting to go elsewhere are minimised - unless they really want a mobile contract with 3. ®

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