Oracle appeals Court of Federal Claims ruling on DoD’s JEDI cloud contract

Oracle Corp. has begun the process of appealing a federal judge’s ruling that tossed out the company’s months-long legal challenge of the Defense Department’s mega-cloud contract known as JEDI.

The firm filed paperwork with the Court of Federal Claims on Monday saying it intended to appeal the court’s July decision, which found that Oracle had no legal standing to challenge the contract.

Dorian Daley, the general counsel for Oracle, said in a statement that the matter is one of procurement integrity, and that the company intended to take its case to the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.

“Federal procurement laws specifically bar single award procurements such as [the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure] JEDI absent satisfying specific, mandatory requirements, and the court in its opinion clearly found DoD did not satisfy these requirements,” Daley said. “The opinion also acknowledges that the procurement suffers from many significant conflicts of interest. These conflicts violate the law and undermine the public trust. As a threshold matter, we believe that the determination of no standing is wrong as a matter of law, and the very analysis in the opinion compels a determination that the procurement was unlawful on several grounds.”

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Oracle’s decision to appeal came toward the middle of the 60-day timeline it had to file a motion after the Court of Federal Claims’s initial ruling on July 12. In that and the July 26 lightly redacted decision, the judge said Oracle didn’t have standing to protest because it couldn’t satisfy JEDI’s requirements, known as the gate criteria.

“DOD is aware of Oracle’s intent to appeal and will review it along with the Department of Justice. As DOD has asserted throughout this litigation, and as confirmed by the court, DOD reasonably evaluated and equally treated all offerors within the framework of a full and open competition. DOD’s priority remains delivering critically needed capabilities to the warfighter while protecting taxpayer resources,” said Elissa Smith, a DoD  spokeswoman in a statement.

JEDI could be worth $10 billion over 10 years with Microsoft and Amazon Web Services being the two remaining vendors competing for the contract. DoD expects to make an award under JEDI later this fall.

In that redacted opinion, the judge said even though DoD does appear to have violated the law requiring multiple awards, Oracle wasn’t prejudiced by that decision, and can’t win the case on that basis.

That’s the basis for which Oracle is continuing its case against JEDI.

Meanwhile, DoD Secretary Mark Esper and the agency’s inspector general are both independent of each other reviewing the JEDI procurement.

The IG said on Aug. 13 that it assembled a “multidisciplinary team” that includes auditors, investigators and attorneys.

DoD CIO Dana Deasy tried to correct some facts about JEDI and said his team will be briefing Esper over the next several weeks. DoD will not make the award under the JEDI program until after Esper has completed his review.

An email to Oracle seeking comment on the appeal was not immediately returned.

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