NATO to seek bids for $3.2B in satellite, cyber security investments

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(Bloomberg) -- The North Atlantic Treaty Organization plans to open the way next month for businesses to bid for about 3 billion euros ($3.2 billion) in orders for satellite communications, air and missile defenses, cyber security and advanced software.

The planned NATO contracts, due to be outlined at an industry conference in Ottawa April 24-26, reflect the alliance’s adjustment to new security threats including Russian meddling in eastern Europe, Mideast migration, Islamic terrorism and cyber attacks.

Of the total, 1.5 billion euros are slated for expanding satellite telecommunications bandwidth for deployed forces, including NATO ships in the Aegean Sea that are helping Greece, Turkey and the European Union border agency tackle refugee flows, according to NATO officials who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

Other planned orders include 800 million euros for NATO’s command-and-control systems for air defense and ballistic-missile defense; 290 million euros for cyber security and information-technology infrastructure; and 180 million euros for advanced software.

After the Ottawa conference and before the end of the year, NATO intends to win approval from member nations for the specific contract amounts and to start inviting bids. Most of the contracts will be multi-annual. The planned orders are part of NATO’s Security Investment program, which is financed by all 28 member countries.

Last year, NATO announced planned orders under the Security Investment program of about 3 billion euros, of which 2 billion euros weren’t ready for bidding and are being carried over into this year’s total.

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