Posts Tagged EODT

Industry Talk: As The Wars Wind Down, How Will The Industry Adapt?

The most vulnerable firms, many in industry say, may be those who have relied on ongoing U.S. military work that is now drying up as the Pentagon “Operational Contingency Allowance” – the additional funding earmarked for the wars – tapers off.
At its peak, the U.S. Commission on Wartime Contracting, a bipartisan legislative commission established to study wartime contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan, estimated there might have been as many as 260,000 contractors in the two countries...
“At the moment, everyone is looking for work that is not OCA-funded,” one industry executive told Reuters on condition of anonymity, saying he expected an era of mergers and even bankruptcies. “It’s going to be like when the tide goes out at the beach and you suddenly find out who has been naked.”

With this post I wanted to identify some trends in the industry that I am seeing as the wars wind down and budgets get tighter. I have posted a couple of articles below that will give you an idea as to what companies are doing and what their strategies are for survival or for growth.

What is interesting with DynCorp and EODT, is their focus on maintaining dominance as to what they are good at. DynCorp is all about aviation and EODT is all about mine clearing. Although both companies do other things in the industry, it is obvious in the posts below that they are taking actions in the market that position them as leaders in these niches.

EODT merging with Sterling International, to form a new company called Sterling Global International is an example of the kind of mergers the top quote was referring too. What is interesting with this move is that for mine clearing operations in the worst parts of the world, you need all sorts of folks to make that happen. From the security to protect those mine clearing technicians to the logistics tail to support an operation. These are all things that EODT did in Iraq and Afghanistan, and by joining forces with SI, they are able to reach other markets. Here is a hint to what they are looking at.

The release said Sterling manages a $175 million weapons removal and abatement program for the State Department, and Kaye said that in comparison to EODT, the Virginia firm is more involved in the work of nonproliferation.
“While the activities that (EODT does) are nonproliferation, they’re much more in a mass-quantity stockpile reduction,” he said. “Sterling is on the forefront of … assisting countries with treaty compliance (and) establishing mine action centers.”
Kaye said Sterling has approximately 150 employees, and the new company will have about 3,500 employees.
After a round of layoffs earlier this year, EODT said it had 250 American employees and 3,000 foreign nationals.
Kaye said Sterling International’s program manager for conventional weapons destruction will remain in that position with the new company……The release said the combined companies will continue to serve existing customers, but will also expand into markets including energy exploration and development and judicial and criminal justice support.

So this new mega mine clearing company will continue to pursue munitions destruction and assist countries in compliance with treaties. I also imagine the Arab Spring is leaving a lot of unexploded munitions all over the place, which if investors want to do business in some of these places, someone needs to remove this dangerous trash of war.

But the big one that perked me up is the mention of energy exploration that was talked about in the next article. One company mentioned was Garda World and their work in Iraq.

Even with U.S. troops gone from Iraq and the number of government contractors down, some companies say they are finding strong demand from energy firms for protection, particularly around Basra in southern Iraq.
“We are as busy as ever and the need has never been greater,” said Pete Dordal, senior vice president at GardaWorld, a global risk management and security services firm. “I don’t want to say it’s a gold rush, but business is very good.”

A gold rush? Interesting, and I imagine that with unrest in the middle east, all energy companies are looking hard at their security and hardening up.  Iraq is just one example of the kind of risk that energy companies are willing to make when it comes to resource extraction in really bad places. Libya is another example, and capable PMSC’s that can protect these energy companies are essential. (11 plus years of war have definitely produced companies that are certainly capable of providing protection in war zones and third world countries)

Another area mentioned was maritime security and the demand for that. Although I am seeing that market getting extremely saturated with companies, all fighting over contracts. But it is an area to get into and I do not see piracy going away any time soon. An example of that is that piracy increased off the west coast of Africa.

The article made a mention of the whole private navies thing, and they are right. I have not seen this get off the ground yet. It’s close, and we will see if it ever sets sail.

One area of business that was brought up in the article was evacuation of clients from countries that have fallen due to the Arab Spring or other disasters. Check out the contract Control Risks had in Libya, and I imagine the company they did this for, paid a pretty penny.

Private security firms, insiders say, evacuated the vast majority of the thousands of foreign nationals plucked from Libya as its civil war erupted early last year. Most were contracted by other private firms, although governments also used them heavily. London-based Control Risks told Reuters last year that China hired it directly to fly hundreds of its nationals out by airliner.

Other areas mentioned or business that I think will add to the market is supporting UN missions like AMISOM, or supporting the post-reconstruction efforts in countries after wars or disasters. Yet again, thanks to the Arab Spring and the wars, and the destruction that has come out of that struggle, there are plenty of places requiring the services of capable companies.

The article ended with an excellent point by Edmond Mulet.

“In some places, contractors might be more effective than some of the troops from contributing nations,” said Edmond Mulet, U.N. Assistant Secretary General for Peacekeeping Operations.
“But the U.N. is simply the sum of its member states and some of them are opposed to the use of contractors in some roles,” he told the conference.

For companies to be marketable, they will have to continue to fight this poor image that the industry is painted with–thanks to the actions of the few. Things like the ISO standards or the ICoC are great for promoting the idea that the industry is trying to correct itself, but there is one thing missing in the industry that I have been hammering on since the beginning of this blog. Leadership.

I believe the secret sauce to the success for all companies, is a focus on fielding good sound leadership to support contracts. It is the leader that will ensure the contract is followed and that operations are sound. It is the leader that will work hard to take care of his people and prevent any actions that might embarrass the company or client. And it is the act of a smart company that supports or grows or hunts down outstanding leaders–and rewards these folks. Leadership, leadership, leadership, and I cannot say it enough.

Clients need good capable contracting leaders as well. Someone that actually cares about constructing a sound contract and cares more about best value and less about what is cheapest. You need a contracting officer who cares–who acts like they are constructing a contract for a doctor who would be assigned to their mother–or a body guard who would be assigned to their mother. Budget constraints will be difficult, but folks must have the courage to do what is right with this stuff.

So the final article is about Dyncorp’s Steven F. Gaffney and his thoughts on the future. I always like hearing what the leaders of companies say, and you can get a real feel sometimes as to what they are optimistic about or concerned about. Here are his thoughts on leadership and what is working in his company.

What have you been focusing on?
It really comes down to: Do you have the right people doing the right things? Are you organized the right way? And the business systems that you have in place — are they strong enough to support the pressures of the business? About 90 percent of our top three levels of leadership are either new to the company or they’re new in position. In two years, we’ve restructured twice around getting to the right market-focused, customer-focused type of organization. We stood up a new business development organization, and we were able to move our win rates from the low teens to close to 50 percent of everything that we bid.

This is very interesting, because he has identified a weakness of the company (I imagine it applies to other companies as well). 90 percent of your top three levels of leadership being new to the company or new in position is not something to cheer about. That is great that the company has re-organized and has achieved a higher ‘win’ rate for contracts, but how can these leaders possibly be effective in carrying out policy if they haven’t a clue about the company’s history or lacks any memory or experience working for the company?

I would also be curious as to why so many new leaders? Is that because of high attrition or is this because of expansion? That is great that the company is winning so many contracts, but if you do not have capable and experienced leaders to implement that stuff, the company is going to have problems.

The other part of interest was the future of the company as the wars wind down?

What’s your strategy as the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan wind down?
I joined the company knowing full well that the changes were going to happen in Iraq and Afghanistan. In fact, many of the programs that we have today — the goal is really to put yourself out of a job. In 2003, when we became one of the largest trainers of police in the Middle East, we knew that the goal was to train a country so that they could perform the function themselves. We’ve been thinking about this issue around what’s next for some time, and that’s why we’ve been working to rebalance our portfolio since I got here. Our aviation business, for instance — today it’s a third of our revenues and half of our earnings. That wasn’t the case two short years ago. A couple months ago, we made a small acquisition in the aviation business to fill a gap that we had, not for the business that we have today but to compete for business two years from now and also get us into the commercial space.

That’s their plan–to rally around aviation. Which is their ‘bread and butter’ and totally makes sense to me, but it would have been nice to hear the other areas of interest.

One area that was not talked about too much in all of these articles was the future of government service contracts as the war winds down. The US government still has a presence in places like Iraq and Afghanistan, and embassies and consulates there and around the world will still require armed security services and logistics. These contracts will continue to be highly competitive as the US continues to reduce involvement in those countries and the available re-construction/COIN related contracts decrease. Training gigs will still be present, but as budgets get tighter and involvement in those countries continues to be politically difficult, eventually that will go away. But we will see how it goes, and there will still be investments in those countries, and the US and it’s partners will still have interest there.

Pretty interesting stuff and we will see how it goes. If anyone has any other ideas or things that I have missed here, by all means please add to the post by commenting below. -Matt

 

Peruvian private security guard, Green Zone Iraq. -Artist Steve Mumford

 

EOD Technology merges with Sterling International
By Josh Flory
October 24, 2012
An East Tennessee defense contractor has joined forces with a Virginia firm.
Lenoir City-based EOD Technology announced Wednesday that it has merged with Reston, Va.-based Sterling International to form Sterling Global Operations.
The new company will be based in Lenoir City, and EODT CEO Matt Kaye will serve as president and CEO of the new venture.
Kaye said Wednesday that the combined companies form “the world’s preeminent conventional munitions disposal organization.”
Asked about the benefits of the deal to EODT, Kaye said that “it really diversifies our customer base. It strengthens our footprint around the world and provides us greater breadth and depth of resources.”
EODT got its start in 1987 as a company specializing in explosive ordnance disposal, and for years specialized in cleaning up contamination at former U.S. military sites. During the George W. Bush administration, EODT branched out into security operations and eventually became a major player in that market.
The company has also received some unwelcome scrutiny in connection with that work, though. In 2010, a U.S. Senate committee criticized EODT for its hiring practices in Afghanistan, and the following year it was revealed that the U.S. State Department had fired the company from a contract to guard the U.S. Embassy in Kabul.
EODT was raided by federal agents in 2010, although no charges have been filed in connection with that episode.
According to a news release, EODT’s employee stock ownership plan acquired Sterling International. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
The release said Sterling manages a $175 million weapons removal and abatement program for the State Department, and Kaye said that in comparison to EODT, the Virginia firm is more involved in the work of nonproliferation.
“While the activities that (EODT does) are nonproliferation, they’re much more in a mass-quantity stockpile reduction,” he said. “Sterling is on the forefront of … assisting countries with treaty compliance (and) establishing mine action centers.”
Kaye said Sterling has approximately 150 employees, and the new company will have about 3,500 employees.
After a round of layoffs earlier this year, EODT said it had 250 American employees and 3,000 foreign nationals.
Kaye said Sterling International’s program manager for conventional weapons destruction will remain in that position with the new company.
Sterling’s website does not identify the company’s top executives, and Kaye declined to identify the founder or CEO of the company. “He’s asked not to be named,” Kaye said, adding that the individual would stay on as an executive adviser.
The release said the combined companies will continue to serve existing customers, but will also expand into markets including energy exploration and development and judicial and criminal justice support.
The new company will have annual revenues of $150 million.
Story here.
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As Iraq, Afghan wars end, private security firms adapt
Sun, Oct 21 2012
By Peter Apps
On a rooftop terrace blocks from the White House, a collection of former soldiers and intelligence officers, executives and contractors drink to the international private security industry.
The past decade – particularly the U.S.-led wars in Iraq and Afghanistan – provided rich pickings for firms providing private armed guards, drivers and other services that would once have been performed by uniformed soldiers.
But as the conflicts that helped create the modern industry wind down, firms are having to adapt to survive. They must also, industry insiders say, work to banish the controversial image of mercenary “dogs of war” that bedevil many firms, particularly in Iraq.

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Jobs: Roving Guard, Germany

Now this one is interesting. Over at SOCNET, there was a post about EODT needing females for this contract. If you would like to see that post, click this link.

As to the specifics of this contract, here is the award snippet:

EOD Technology Awarded $17.1m for Top Security Security Guard Services?By Department of Defense?Friday, October 5, 2012. EOD Technology, Lenoir City, Tenn., was awarded a $17,172,085 firm-fixed-price contract.
The award will provide for the top secret security guard services.
Work will be performed in Germany, with an estimated completion date of Sept. 27, 2017.
The bid was solicited through the Internet, with one bid received.
The U.S. Army Contracting Command, Kaiserslautern, Germany, is the contracting activity (W564KV-12-C-0058).

If anyone from EODT would like to comment on this job, please feel free to post in the comments or contact me directly.

As for those who wish to apply, I am not a recruiter for EODT and I am not a POC for this job. Please follow the links below to apply and good luck. -Matt

 

Position: Roving Guard (Notional Opportunity)
Req Code: 1003742
Location: Germany – Generic Germany
Primary Functions:
Responsible for installation access control, static perimeter security, roving security patrols, intrusion detection system monitoring in support of a US Government Facility.  Actively support and uphold the Company’s stated vision, mission and values.
EODT Vision:
To promote freedom, stability, and environmental stewardship worldwide.
EODT Mission:
To enhance our customers’ effectiveness – anytime, anywhere. We accomplish this mission by delivering superior expertise to the projects we undertake – and by continuing to improve our work by fostering innovation and providing a project management team of professionals.
EODT Core Values
SERVICE, AGILITY, INTEGRITY, DRIVE
Essential Functions and Duties:
•Conduct roving patrols
•Provide static installation access control
•Perform static perimeter security
•Operate the Electronic System Surveillance (ESS)
Job Requirements:
•Must be a U.S. Citizen
•Must have a valid and current Top Secret Security Clearance with eligibility for SCI

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Industry Talk: State Department Dismisses EODT From The Kabul Embassy Contract

 

This actually came out on the forums a couple days back.  Supposedly everyone that was slated for this contract is now being redirected to other places, like Iraq. Although that is just rumor from the forums. Perhaps if anyone from EODT would like to comment or correct the record on this, feel free to say so in the comments section or send me an email.

AGNA is also hanging on to this sucker for a bit longer. I am sure the guys working for them right now have been going through a roller coaster of emotions as to how long the contract will last and who will they work for next? These transition periods can be very aggravating to say the least. -Matt

State Department axes guard firm for Kabul embassy

March 17, 2011

The State Department has fired the contractor it hired to guard the U.S. Embassy in Kabul, leaving protection of the key diplomatic outpost in the hands of another company the department has been trying to replace for more than a year.

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Industry Talk: US Drops The Hammer On AED, Watan Group, And EODT

   In October I posted the Senate Armed Services Committee report that slammed a couple of companies in Afghanistan. The thing is like a hit list now, and the US government is doing a follow up by banning or investigating these companies further. I am sure there will be more to come. -Matt

Edit: 12/10/2010 Found some more stuff, and this is dealing with the raid on EODT. Check it out.

Monitor reveals reason for EOD Technology raid

By Josh FloryDecember 9, 2010

A federal watchdog indicated Thursday that this week’s raid on a local defense contractor is aimed at bringing accountability to those who have tried to take advantage of the situation in Iraq.

Stuart Bowen is the special inspector general for Iraq reconstruction, a position created by Congress in 2004 to provide accountability for the use of funds for Iraq relief and reconstruction. In an interview Thursday, Bowen said his office has more than 100 ongoing cases, including a case related to Wednesday’s raid on Lenoir City contractor EOD Technology.

The IG said most of the cases are executed through task forces, such as the one that participated in the Wednesday raid. He added that the U.S. Army’s criminal investigation division ‘played a major role’ in getting that case put together. Bowen, a graduate of the University of the South, said his agency also works closely with the Defense Criminal Investigative Service, which is an arm of the Defense Department’s Office of Inspector General.

‘This is not the first, and it won’t be the last, time that we work with those agencies … as well as (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) to hold accountable those who have taken advantage of the chaotic situation in Iraq for their criminal, personal benefit,’ said Bowen.

Asked if that’s what he believes happened in the case of EODT, Bowen replied, ‘Yes, that is why the search was carried out.’

In a statement issued Wednesday, EODT officials said they didn’t know of anything that could have triggered the raid. ‘We obviously would not have been selected for some of the sensitive and important projects we handle for our country around the world had we not been thoroughly investigated before and found to be trustworthy,’ the statement said……

Read the rest here.

U.S. bans contractor from further aid programs

US blacklists Afghan security firm tied to Karzai

Homeland Security, ICE agents raid EOD Technology in Lenoir City

U.S. bans contractor from further aid programs

By Ken Dilanian

December 8, 2010

The U.S. government Wednesday took the unusual step of banning an American firm from being awarded new federal contracts due to evidence of “serious corporate misconduct” uncovered in an investigation of the company’s work on aid programs in Pakistan and Afghanistan.The move by the U.S. Agency for International Development, or USAID, to suspend the Academy for Educational Development, or AED, a Washington-based nonprofit corporation that does extensive federal contracting, highlights longstanding concerns about the way the United States delivers foreign aid through a network of American contractors that some critics deride as “Beltway Bandits.”AED has 65 contracts and grant agreements with USAID worth $640 million, according to agency spokesman Lars Anderson.The suspension prevents AED from winning new contracts with any federal agency, Anderson said. USAID is now examining whether to seek debarment of the company, a step which would mean the loss of all its federal contracts.USAID’s inspector general declined to release details of the alleged wrongdoing by AED, citing an ongoing investigation. But in a recently published report to Congress, the office noted that USAID “terminated a 5-year, $150 million cooperative agreement after [investigators] found evidence of fraud” relating to the purchase of household kits obtained by AED in Pakistan’s tribal areas.The investigation revealed evidence of collusion between vendors and AED, resulting in overpayment for certain goods, the report said. The investigation also discovered that AED had inappropriately hired relatives of a person hired by USAID to oversee the program.

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Industry Talk: AEGIS Defence Gets TFBSO Contract In Iraq, EODT Wins FOB Lindsey Deuce Contract In Afghanistan

    This is a quick update on some news with two companies and their contracts won.  If any readers have anything else to add to these two deals, feel free to comment below. -Matt

Contract Award Date: November 16, 2010

Contract Award Number: W91GDW-11-C-9000

Contract Award Dollar Amount: $3,037,880.14 (EST)

Contractor Awarded Name: AEGIS DEFENCE SERVICES LTD

Nov 26, 2010

The contract is to provide all resources, personnel, equipment and management necessary for the technical management, oversight, transportation of Task Force members, and security support of the TFBSO economic revitalization activities performed predominantly in the Baghdad region, or on request to other areas throughout Iraq as required. Security services include security program management, anti-terrorism support and analyses, movement/escort security, transportation support, and close personal protection. The Contractor will provide security advisors and planners to facilitate, coordinate and implement security requirements and contingency plans. The proposed period of performance for this contract will be 68 calendar days or 25 November 2010 – 31 January 2011. The estimated dollar value is $3,343,662.11

FBO link here.

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EODT Awarded Security Contract at Forward Operating Base Lindsey Deuce, Afghanistan

LENOIR CITY, TN (November 29, 2010) – EOD Technology, Inc. (EODT) has been awarded a task order by the Kandahar Regional Contracting Center to perform security services at Forward Operating Base (FOB) Lindsey Deuce in Kandahar, Afghanistan.

Under this task order, EODT will conduct defensive security and surveillance operations designed to protect Coalition Forces. Security operations will be performed within the confines of FOB Lindsey Deuce.

This task order was awarded under the Area of Operations (AO) Mountain Warrior Indefinite Delivery/Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) contract for providing security services in support of Coalition Force missions throughout the Mountain Warrior Area of Operation.

In addition to securing military installations in Afghanistan, EODT provides construction and mine action services, to include demining and battle area clearance, in Afghanistan and other locations worldwide.

Story here.

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Industry Talk: AGNA Report News–Sloppy Reporting And Range Violations By The IG In Afghanistan

     A senior level review of the misconduct allegations against AGNA personnel, combined with AGNA’s history of contract compliance de?ciencies, led DS, AQM, and Embassy Kabul to conclude that it was in the best interests of the Government to compete a new contract. In light of recent legislation, the KESF contract has been combined with the Baghdad Embassy Security Force and Worldwide Personal Protective Services II (WPPS II) contracts into one base Worldwide Protective Services (WPS) contract.  The new WPS contract is a multi-award, inde?nite delivery, inde?nite quantity (IDIQ) contract that will be awarded on a best value basis. Individual requirements, such as the KESF, will be awarded as task orders under the base WPS contract. The current KESF contract with AGNA expired on June 30, 2010, but performance has been extended until the end of December 2010 to allow for the completion of the acquisition process for the new WPS contract and KESF task order and to provide for an orderly transition to the next provider. -From the Bureau of DS Comments in Report 

     What I wanted to do here is give the former contractors and managers of Armorgroup North America a chance to voice their opinion of the latest report. My inbox is filled with numerous emails from former employees and managers of AGNA, all wanting to tell their side of story. Partly because Congress, State or the IG really could care less about the little guy on the ground, and partly because the report is sloppy. So call this a rebuttal from the little guy.

     This particular email was from a former manager at AGNA, whose identity I will refer to as ‘former manager’. I would hope that this would have some significance to those that are reading this, and that what he has to say pretty much conflicts with what the IG is reporting. Specifically that the weapons issue pointed out in the report was lacking some key points, and that the IG violated the range rules during their inspection.

     I might also add that there is nothing in the report that discusses how AGNA came to be contracted in the first place. The Commission on Wartime Contracting came out with an excellent and damning report about how Lowest Priced, Technically Acceptable contracting is what created the environment that forced State to contract with the lowest bidder.

     It is also interesting to me that Danielle Brian of POGO still asserts that LPTA is a legitimate contracting mechanism for security contracting in war zones, when there has been several reports presented that have identified the horrific secondary affects of this type of contracting in war-zones.

     Best Value contracting would have given State more choice and flexibility in the matter, and they could have gone with the best company for the job and not with the cheapest or technically acceptable. It would not have been a race to the bottom, but a race to the best value company for the job.

    Furthermore, why is POGO so silent about the TWISS program, another example of the failure of LPTA? (did I mention that companies are now considering Sierra Leone contractors as guards because they are cheaper than Ugandans?) I know POGO reads the blog and I have directed everyone that has complained to me, to go to POGO and voice their concern. I would like to think that POGO would actually listen to what the guys on the ground have to say about such things?

     Or why is the Army using LPTA for FOB security in Afghanistan, when the CWC is so opposed to it? I posted a ton of contracts flying that were all LPTA, and here we are trying to convince Karzai to not ban PSC companies. With LPTA, we are giving him more ammunition by putting our lowest bidders, ‘junior varsity squads’ out there. Pffft.

     The other thing that pisses me off about LPTA, is that the troops see the direct result of this on the FOBs. How would you feel if you were being protected by the lowest bidder? It is a simple question, that pisses off most when they come to the conclusion that they don’t like it. Especially if their base has been attacked, like what has happened frequently in Afghanistan.

     LPTA doesn’t work for picking a doctor to cure your sick mother, and it doesn’t work for picking a company to protect your people in a war zone. LPTA is great for picking a company to rake your leaves though. lol You get what you pay for, and that is the lesson I got out of the reports.

    Thats not to say that State or AGNA doesn’t share any fault here, but Congress must take more blame, and all because they insisted on lowballing the security for Embassy protection in the first place.

    Finally, this post is about the guys on the ground who were contracted to operate in this environment. They are the ones that take on the task of trying to make this mess work. No one signs on to a contract to do bad. They sign on so they can be employed and pay their bills/feed their family at home. They sign on because they care about participating in the war. They are also sacrificing by being away from family, or facing death and injury in war-zones–and all for their country and for the war effort. We should support them, not hate them.

     Most guys whom have done the contracting thing for awhile have also worked for numerous companies. A contractor could have worked for Xe, Custer Battles, Erinys, Aegis, AGNA etc., and that is not abnormal nor does that mean the contractor is a bad guy. They are going where the work is so they can continue to earn a living and serve in the war. I am sure when EODT takes over this contract in Kabul, AGNA guys will be ‘switching t-shirts’ and transition under the management of this new company.

     I want to make sure that Congress, State, AGNA, and now EODT knows that these men need leaders who can manage a ‘properly funded, staffed, and equipped’ contract at all levels. These men are not the bad guys, and they deserve the best management we can give them.

     This work force will move mountains for you, if you actually apply a little Jundism to your management principles as well. Know your stuff, have the courage to do what is right, and take care of your people. Trust, but verify. Lead by example. Lead from the front. Your people will support what they help to create. Obtain feedback gold. Create a learning organization and gain a shared reality. Continuous improvement and customer service and satisfaction. Have fun.  All of this stuff is important, and all of it should be geared towards results and getting the job done. -Matt

 

From Former Manager at AGNA

     “Sorry I cannot be more forthcoming with dates and witnesses, most have left. A number of the team in Kabul are upset as great progress has been made and this is rarely acknowledged, we just get the old issues regurgitated and inaccurate reporting. No organisation, or individual, is perfect and mistakes will be made, but, this report is poor and has an impact on individuals and corporations. How can organizations be expected to work with the IG if they produce sloppy reports, it is counter productive. Instead of working on ways to improve the contracting process and performance; it erodes it – people do not put things in writing, everyone tries to cover their backs all the time, every decision takes a long time/ or make poor ones, as people try to assess what an inspector or congressman (who has to be re-elected every two years) might say three years from now and with 20/20 hindsight.”

From IG Report In Regards To The Firing Range

      AGNA does not adequately maintain training records. AGNA firearms instructors failed to sufficiently instruct guards to help correct firing errors. Instructors also qualified guards who did not achieve the minimum qualifying score at the firing range.

From Former Manager at AGNA

     “There are other areas that need to be looked at – such as the statement that AGNA fails to conduct weapon training properly – how can they make this a key finding from a visit to one range? The same range the inspector is removed from the firing line by a former ranger chief instructor for moving in front of the firing line. The same inspector who, in front of the project manager, grabbed an M4 from a guard to check the serial number, not checking the weapon status/ clearing it and muzzle sweeping personnel in the process – we would be disciplined for handling a weapon in this way. How can they say AGNA put guards on post who failed the weapons qual, without checking the source documentation? (which they found difficult to navigate but did not ask the training staff to assist them in finding). Have you looked at the equation they used with regard to rifle quals? It makes no sense to me and I believe the two personnel they say failed actually had passed if you looked at the source document, not the spreadsheet where results are collated. They say guards were on post for 8 months without training, yet they interviewed some of these guards, I would imagine that they should have asked them if they had undergone training and when? If they were trained prior to standing post (which they were) then it is an issue of maintenance of records, which is still a problem to be highlighted and resolved, but does not effect the security of the Embassy.”

From IG Report In Regards To Weapons

     AGNA’s current control of U.S. Government-furnished property is generally satisfactory, but AGNA cannot account for 101 U.S. Government-furnished weapons that have been missing since 2007. Additionally, from July 2007 until September 2009, AGNA used U.S. Government-furnished weapons to train guards when contractor-furnished weapons were required by its contract. OIG calculates that AGNA’s loss and misuse of these U.S. Government-furnished weapons cost the government $431,000.

*****

     OIG found that AGNA cannot account for 101 U.S. Government-furnished assault ri?es of a lot of 116 that was to be returned to the U.S. Government in July 2007 under a contract modi?cation. OIG found one missing assault ri?e of this lot under a desk in an AGNA of?ce. The photo on the right in Figure 3 shows the assault ri?e as found under the desk. DS was able to locate an addition 14 weapons that had been transferred to other State Department of?ces and US Government agencies. Neither AGNA nor DS could provide documentation verifying the return or location of the remaining 101 assault ri?es. OIG calculates this assault ri?e lot is worth approximately $50,000.

     According to correspondence between the Department and AGNA management, from July 2007 until September 2009, AGNA did not provide a suf?cient number of contractor-furnished weapons to the KESF guards. Instead, AGNA used U.S. Government-furnished weapons for training, although the contract required contractor-furnished weapons (U.S. Government-furnished weapons are to be used for guard duty). AGNA and the Department negotiated a ?nancial settlement in which AGNA was to reimburse the U.S. Government $381,000 for the use of these weapons. However, OIG reviewed invoices and found that AGNA has not yet reimbursed the Department. DS of? cials con?rmed that AGNA has yet to reimburse the Department.

From Former Manager at AGNA

     “The original contract and mod 1 contained 116 soviet block weapons that were used on the previous contract, before the Govt supplied US weapons. As these weapons were not going to be used on the program DoS moved them to their own storage unit prior to 1 July 2007 (when AGNA took responsibility for the contract). Consequently these weapons were never part of the equipment handover and AGNA did not sign for them on handover. Because of this the contract was modified in mid July 2007 reflecting this. How can AGNA provide handover documentation for items they were never responsible for? It seems as if the IG assumed AGNA was responsible because the contract mod was mid July, but that is a poor assumption, and the IG was informed of the situation by DS.”

     “From what I understand DoS then gave AGNA some of the weapons (7 or so) to use for identification training (they were generally kept on the training/ briefing room in full view), but they were demilitarized (welded bolt, soldered and bent barrel etc). One of these weapons is the one seen in the photograph in the report. Other weapons were sent to the US for use at DS facilites and the rest were disposed of, although I do not know how. Most of the people involved in this are DoS personnel who oversaw the program handover. Those from AGNA have since left the company. However, with all the scrutiny on this program you would think that DoS would have mentioned AGNA ‘losing’ 100+ weapons before now…”

Comments from the Bureau of Diplomatic Security in Report

     A senior level review of the misconduct allegations against AGNA personnel, combined with AGNA’s history of contract compliance de?ciencies, led DS, AQM, and Embassy Kabul to conclude that it was in the best interests of the Government to compete a new contract. In light of recent legislation, the KESF contract has been combined with the Baghdad Embassy Security Force and Worldwide Personal Protective Services II (WPPS II) contracts into one base Worldwide Protective Services (WPS) contract.  The new WPS contract is a multi-award, inde?nite delivery, inde?nite quantity (IDIQ) contract that will be awarded on a best value basis. Individual requirements, such as the KESF, will be awarded as task orders under the base WPS contract. The current KESF contract with AGNA expired on June 30, 2010, but performance has been extended until the end of December 2010 to allow for the completion of the acquisition process for the new WPS contract and KESF task order and to provide for an orderly transition to the next provider.

Link to report here.

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