MILAN : Italian IT group AlmavivA and cloud provider Aruba said on Saturday they had presented a joint proposal to the government to help create a cloud-based infrastructure for the country's public administration data.
Known as the National Strategic Hub, the infrastructure is part of the government's strategy to accelerate digital transformation and guarantee national data security.
The cloud hub, one of the projects funded by the European Union to help Italy's economy recover from the pandemic, reflects European efforts to make the 27-member bloc less dependent on large overseas tech companies.
The AlmavivA-Aruba proposal, presented as a public-private partnership, rivals that put forward last month by a consortium led by Italy's biggest phone group Telecom Italia and including state lender CDP, cybersecurity group Leonardo and state-owned IT company Sogei.
In its national Recovery Plan sent to Brussels in April, Rome earmarked 900 million euros (US$1.04 billion) for the project. It plans to award the tender by the end of 2022, at the latest.
The two proposals will likely be followed by others.
Italian software developer Engineering is also preparing to table a proposal in the coming days, Maximo Ibarra, its new chief executive told daily Corriere della Sera, in comments later confirmed by a spokesperson.
Engineering, owned by Bain Capital and NB Renaissance, will lead "a consortium with an original approach", Ibarra told the paper, adding his company could make use of its past experience in the digitalisation of Italy's public administration system.
(US$1 = 0.8625 euros)
(Reporting by Agnieszka Flak; Editing by Christina Fincher)