The BBC has announced the shortlist of bidders selected for the next round in the procurement process for its new technology services contract and the sale of its IT subsidiary BBC Technology.
Among the shortlist for the 10-year, £2bn contract are Computer Sciences Corporation, Fujitsu, EDS, Capita, Accenture, IBM, Logica and Hewlett-Packard. The shortlist will be cut to three in April, with the contract expected to begin in September.
BBC chief technology officer John Varney said, “We have received really positive feedback from the market about this deal, and are delighted to be able to announce that our timetable for procurement is on track.
“During the next phase of the process there will be a rigorous evaluation of not only the technology expertise and operations of these bidders, but their culture and fit with the BBC – this is a crucial part of our negotiations.”
The move to choose a new IT outsourcing partner followed an internal strategic review of the BBC’s IT requirements for the next decade. The review identified potential annual savings for the BBC of at least £20m if its IT services were outsourced.
The savings, combined with the profits from the sale of BBC Technology, will allow the BBC to invest more money into its programmes and services.
However, the proposed sale of BBC Technology has led to protests from broadcast union Bectu, which has expressed concern about the risk posed to BBC activities by handing control of its communication and IT networks over to a private company.
The process for procurement and sale, which is subject to the approval of the secretary of state for culture, media and sport, will be conducted in full consultation with staff and unions, the BBC said.