GSA and Novell negotiating a SmartBuy deal

The General Services Administration is negotiating an enterprise software license deal with Novell Inc. for the government's SmartBuy program.

GSA's Federal Supply Service wants to modify Novell's IT Schedule contract to include tiered pricing for quantity buys and the ability for Novell to sell packaged software and services, according to a notice on GSA's FedBizOpps site.

'We've done enough up-front work and feel comfortable enough to say we are intending to make a deal with Novell,' said Neal Fox, FSS' assistant commissioner for commercial acquisition. 'We are hoping to get this done in a month or so.'

Fox said he could not comment on the negotiations. But the tiered pricing model could work in one of two ways, he said. Either an agency would get larger discounts over time as it buys more software or agencies could receive a discount by teaming together to buy software in volume. If agencies team together, GSA's Federal Technology Service would handle contract administration and pooling of funds, he said.

GSA has modified schedule contracts to include tiered pricing, but these deals would not be considered SmartBuy deals because the discounts weren't steep enough, Fox said.

After reviewing agencies' software inventories, which were due to GSA May 1, the agency plans to meet with other vendors who have tiered pricing to see if their contracts have the potential to be converted to SmartBuy deals.

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