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SME Browsium wins HM Revenue & Customs IT upgrade £50m contract

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

HM Revenue & Customs has cut the cost of an IT upgrade by up to £50m by awarding a contract to a start-up IT company, rather than a major systems integrator.

Redmond-based company Browsium was chosen to upgrade HMRC from Internet Explorer 6 to IE9, after large IT suppliers were unable to offer a cost-effective solution.

Browsium quoted a figure of around £1.28m to complete the job, compared to quotes from £35m to £50m or above from large system integrators, revealed CIO Phil Pavitt, last week.

HMRC, which has generally favoured framework contracts with large systems integrators, had some initial concerns about using an SME to complete a major project on the UK’s tax infrastructure. HMRC has mitigated the risk by requesting that Browsium team up with a second company, CDG, to provide an extra layer of backing and financial security.

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