Amazon.com Inc filed a lawsuit in the US Court of Federal Claims, on Friday, challenging Pentagon granting a $10 billion cloud computing contract, known as Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) to Microsoft. The contract that was closely contested by a number of companies, with Amazon Web Services (AWS) as an expected winner, was awarded to Microsoft Azure on October 25, this year.
An Amazon spokesperson informed that the company filed a complaint and supplemental motion for discovery. Due to the sensitive issue, the complaint is not publicly accessible, Reuters reported.
"The Complaint and related filings contain source selection sensitive information, as well as AWS's proprietary information, trade secrets, and confidential financial information, the public release of which would cause either party severe competitive harm," Amazon said in the court filing. It further sought the protective order, "The record in this bid protest likely will contain similarly sensitive information."
Since Microsoft bagged the $10 billion contract, Amazon has alleged that the contract involves bias and political interference. This is chiefly because of the fraught relationship that the company's owner Jeff Bezos, has with the US President.
On November 14, when Amazon was first reported of filing the lawsuit, the company said in a statement that the it believes that it's critical for the country "that the government and its elected leaders administer procurements objectively and in a manner that is free from political influence". And that "Numerous aspects of the JEDI evaluation process contained clear deficiencies, errors, and unmistakable bias — and it's important that these matters be examined and rectified"
Trump on multiple occasions has criticized Bezos, chiefly because he owns the Washington Post that has been critical of Trump administration throughout. Trump has criticized the newspaper for cooking stories about him and Amazon of not paying its fair share of taxes.
In July, Trump said in a press conference that he was seriously considering looking at the contract. He said that the other companies in the bid complained that the specifications of the contract favors AWS. "We're getting tremendous complaints from other companies", he said. "Some of the greatest companies in the world are complaining about it." He named Microsoft, Oracle and IBM.
In a new book, retired Navy commander Guy Snodgrass, who served as a speech writer to former Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, said Trump called Mattis and directed him to "screw Amazon" by preventing it from bidding on the JEDI contract. "We're not going to do that," Mattis later told other Pentagon officials, according to the book. "This will be done by the book, both legally and ethically."
In the lawsuit filed on November 22, Amazon has also submitted videos of Trump to the Court of Federal Claims; the overall complaint, however, remains inaccessible.