Government Contractor Galore A La UK: Serco

The Private-Government-Private Mega Corporations Phenomena

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  1. That’s alarming but something just doesn’t sound quite right with that video report.

    If all that is true it would seem Serco is much too large to handle those things efficiently. That makes me think it’s a front company to bypass democratic checks and balances rather than a real company managing all those contracts.

  2. IMO, it doesn’t matter if it’s a front or legit. What matters is the concentration of power in one firm.

    To many, this would be a monopoly. To others, they’d say this is ok! This is the free market at work! No more regulation. And various other Greenspan talking points.

    Besides, if it is a front, who’s in control? CIA and other agencies? A combination of CIA and corporate? The CIA does have an investment division that’s backed lots of startups.

    As to the part about ex civil service people working for them, how are you going to stop that? The standard Inside the Beltway response to that would be this is how things are done. Bring in experienced people, lower your costs and raise your profit margin.

    One area they don’t handle yet? Food stamps. JP Morgan Chase still has the govt. contract to handle that (complete with 24/7 call centers). 44 million are currently on food stamps.

  3. theepitbull says:

    Has anyone seen this?

    Spies For Hire

    Principal Agencies
    National Security Agency (NSA), National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA)
    Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA), Office of Naval Intelligence
    Air Force Information Warfare Center, Department of Defense

    Top Executives
    Edward J. Casey, Jr., Chairman and CEO
    Harry Gatanas – Senior VP, Defense and Intelligence Group (former NSA director of Acquisitions)

    Annual Revenue
    $510 million (2006)

    Intelligence Percent of Revenue
    48 percent

    Washington Technology Top 100: #44 (Note: last listing before Serco acquisition)

    SI International, Inc. of McLean, Va., is a key NSA contractor now owned by Serco Inc. of the UK, the world’s largest outsourcing company. SI runs some of the NSA’s support and management functions. Its niche is advising intelligence and defense agencies on their acquisition and outsourcing strategies. It also helps intelligence agencies as they shift from proprietary “stove-pipes” to integrating their IT systems with sister agencies and the Pentagon’s evolving Global Information Grid. GIG is the Internet-like system that will theoretically link military commanders, warfighters, and national collection agencies into a single classified network.

    In August 2008, SI was acquired by Serco Inc., which describes itself as a “a leading provider of professional, technology, and management services focused on the federal government.” SI International is now part of Serco’s North American division. See Serco’s press release.

    SI bought into many of its contracts by acquiring smaller companies holding specialized NSA contracts. Of particular importance was SI’s $30 million acquisition in 2004 of Bridge Technology Corporation, which had extensive contracts with defense intelligence agencies. Bridge “really gave us name-brand recognition within the intelligence community,” S. Bradford “Bud” Antle, SI’s former president and CEO, told investors during a 2006 Washington conference on defense investing sponsored by the Friedman Billings Ramsey investment firm. “The IC wants other players. They get a bit in-bred because they have a set of contractors that are clean with capabilities they’ve known forever.” For that reason, agencies are pleased when they “see an acquisition like us buying Bridge.”
    Corporate Information

    According to SI’s old website, the company specializes in “mission critical outsourcing.” That means SI International “is an expert in putting together mission-critical business process outsourcing (BPO) solutions for record management and processing, case management, workflow management, human resource services, and logistics operations. These outsourcing arrangements increase efficiency, productivity and quality of service, lower administrative costs, reduce office supply costs, enhance supervisory oversight over personnel, minimize time spent on unnecessary research and statistical analysis, and enable civilian agency and Department of Defense personnel to take on higher priority assignments. Given today’s global environment, government employees are routinely asked to take on more and more tasks with increasingly finite resources, which makes the need for these BPO arrangements even more acute.”
    CorpWatch Analysis

    Because of its high-visibility role as an adviser for the NSA, SI has filled its management team and board of directors with former high-ranking intelligence officials. Harry Gatanas, SI’s executive vice president for strategic programs, oversees the company’s business with the Pentagon and its intelligence agencies and remains with the company as Serco’s Senior Vice President, Defense & Intelligence Group. Gatanas came to SI directly from the NSA, where he was the agency’s senior acquisition executive and the contracting manager for Project Groundbreaker, one of the largest outsourcing projects ever undertaken by a federal government agency. Prior to coming to the NSA, Gatanas spent 30 years in military intelligence, where his duties included managing contracts for the Army.
    Recent Contracts/Events

    In April 2008, SI announced that it was a member of an SAIC team that won a multi-award, indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity contract supporting the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA). Under the contract, SAIC wrote in a press release, “SAIC will support the DIA mission with services in areas including foreign cultures, regional dynamics, illicit drugs, infectious disease and health, and emerging and disruptive technologies to provide effective analysis for the Defense Intelligence Enterprise.” SI’s latest contract with the NSA was signed in April 2008, when it won three “Enterprise Program Management” contracts with a potential value of more than $300 million. Under the contracts, SI will help NSA “upgrade its acquisition management services” and “modernize its information technology, systems and programs” (major subcontractors on the project include Booz Allen Hamilton and Lockheed Martin). In 2005, SI signed a three-year contract with the NSA to provide training in financial management, and in 2006 added a five-year $6.9 million “task order” to run the NSA’s human resources “welcome center” in Fort Meade.


    Primary sourcing for this profile came from Tim Shorrock, ”Spies for Hire: The Secret World of Intelligence Outsourcing” (Simon & Schuster/2008) and from DIA and company press releases.




    Another ‘Company You Never Heard Of’

    PBS: EXPOSE: American’s Investigative Reports:



    Vanity Fair pulls back the curtain on SAIC, the largest government contractor you’ve never heard of. Science Applications International Corporation has a workforce of 44,000, annual revenues that reached $8 billion in 2006, and a list of current and former board members that reads like a who’s who of political and military heavyweights. How is it that even though “several of SAIC’s biggest projects have turned out to be colossal failures,” the company always manages to get paid?


    Link of the week:

  4. jschoneboom says:

    All I can say is holy crap. That’s one huge sprawling entity. I don’t think you can draw a line between “front” and “legit” in a case like this. It should be called The Omni Entity. Motto: “All your base are belong to us.”

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