The UK government is looking for a new emergency services network provider

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The UK government is looking for a new partner to provide it with Emergency Services Network (ESN) services after years of setbacks and budgeting woes for the current project.

The UK Home Office is reportedly running a tender worth around £895 million to choose a new supplier. 

The Home Office is looking to partner up with a “user services” supplier, which would work next to other partners, including EE which the government agency described as its “current” mobile supplier.

ESN delays

Whoever wins the bid will need to work in program and project delivery, system integration, network and IT infrastructure delivery, as well as the creation of a 4G/5G standalone mobile core network, the publication says. Furthermore, the company will be involved in specifications and certification services for third-party devices and systems connected to the ESN.

Companies interested in competing for the tender have exactly a month - by June 19 - to submit their bid, while the initial term of the contract is due at the end of 2031, it was said. The contract can be extended twice, by 12 months each time, it was added.

The initial contract to replace Airwave’s two-way radio system that’s currently used for ESN, was awarded in 2015 to a consortium comprising of EE, Motorola, and KBR. The deadline for project completion was 2020, but in 2019, the government announced the project was already running roughly 50% over budget, and that it would break the deadline by three years, at least. 

Last year, Motorola started negotiations with the Home Office to step out of the contract, claiming limited future service potential of the assets being built out. Furthermore, in April this year, the Competition and Markets Authority published a report claiming the services wouldn’t be available before 2029. 

Via: Mobile World Live

Sead Fadilpašić

Sead is a seasoned freelance journalist based in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. He writes about IT (cloud, IoT, 5G, VPN) and cybersecurity (ransomware, data breaches, laws and regulations). In his career, spanning more than a decade, he’s written for numerous media outlets, including Al Jazeera Balkans. He’s also held several modules on content writing for Represent Communications.