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BT announces significant local government milestone


January 02, 2007 - BT today announced that it has reached a significant milestone agreement, further demonstrating its strong presence in the local government sector. Alongside partner organisation Liberata, it has been named as preferred bidder to become the private sector strategic partner to Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council in the West Midlands.

This partnering project, which is forecast to create at least 450 new jobs for local people, will see BT plough an initial investment of almost £50 million into the venture in return for a contract valued at almost £300 million over 15 years.

BT/Liberata will build a new regional business centre in Sandwell to run a range of IT and core business services for the council and attract new business into the borough. The aim is to improve the council’s performance and to boost access to services for local residents by upgrading the council’s IT infrastructure and making major improvements in the delivery of Finance, HR & Payroll and Customer Services. Sandwell’s services are currently judged as ’fair’ with ’promising’ prospects for improvement.

Jeremy Stafford, managing director, BT Government Services, commented: “BT has demonstrated its strong credentials in the local government sector, working on transformational projects with a number of local authorities. We are confident that the public/private partnership approach delivers enormous value, both in terms of boosting efficiency and improving public services. We look forward to deploying our experience in the West Midlands, working with Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council on this ambitious partnering project.”

Following the preferred bidder decision, contracts are due to be signed in the next few weeks, with partnering arrangements scheduled to begin in April 2007.


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