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By | Joe Fay 4th April 2008 15:52

IBM back on Federal bid list

Agreement reached with EPA? That was quick

IBM has scrambled back on the Federal Government’s list of IT suppliers after being kicked off earlier this week following a dispute with the Environmental Protection Agency.

The IT giant said today it struck an agreement with the EPA to end the temporary suspension and would start bidding for new business immediately.

At the same time, it said: “IBM will continue to cooperate with the EPA's ongoing investigation of possible violations of the Procurement Integrity provisions of the Office of Federal Procurement Policy Act regarding a bid for business with the EPA, and with a related investigation by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia.”

It was this investigation that caused IBM to be shown the door – temporarily – in the first place. The US Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Virginia served IBM and some employees with grand jury subpoenas requesting testimony and documents regarding business between employees of the EPA and IBM employees.

IBM said it only found out about the suspension, and the action, when it read about it on the General Services Administration website a week ago.

At the time, IBM declined to discuss specifics, but spokesman Fred McNeese said the company understands the issue is over whether it improperly received insider EPA information concerning a contract.

While the lifting of the suspension will be a relief to IBM, it will also remove a major headache for its channel. During the vendor's exile, its channel partners were also hamstrung in their own efforts to win business from the government. ®

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