“It’s already starting to bear fruit,” Kosobud said, indicating they hope to make the first award under the month-old EPIC soon.
In addition to the timing, the competition typically drives costs down for countries who can now present problems to the vendor pool, receive solutions and make a best-value selection.
“Many of the countries we deal with don’t have large defense budgets and aren’t awash with money,” Kosobud said.
The contract is designed for non-programs of record meaning they are systems the U.S. Air Force doesn’t purchase in its inventory.
“We’re looking at non-standard types of aircraft or sensors, like a King Air or Pilatus PC-12, capabilities that integrate aircraft and commercial-off-the-shelf solutions,” he said. “USAF systems such as F-15s and F-16s that require development and testing are handled by other organizations.”
Although the contract is about delivering capabilities to FMS partners, the USAF warfighter gains as well.
“Not only is it providing our partners the capability to defend their own borders, as well as an opportunity for interoperability with United States and our allies, but it’s also provides us that bit of a foothold in building relationships with other countries and beating our peer adversaries to the punch,” Kosobud said.