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Jackson wins its biggest ever deal


A THREE-YEAR battle for a massive Highways Agency deal is finally over, with Jackson Civil Engineering claiming its biggest ever contract.

The Ipswich-based contractor is part of the Fluor-led GeneSYS consortium, which was chosen last week as preferred bidder on the Public Private Partnership deal to manage the agency's telecommunications network throughout England.

The GeneSYS team, which includes bank HSBC, consultant Mott MacDonald, communications outfit Alcatel and computer technology firm Telindus, has seen off two rival bids, including a team led by Pell Frischmann.

Jackson is thought to be in line for a massive £250 million slice of the overall contract, which could eventually top £800 million. One source said: 'It's a record for Jackson.As yet it's not done and dusted but the team is ecstatic with the news.'

Part of Jackson's deal will include assembling CCTV masts, renewing cross-carriageway ducting and traffic management work throughout the network.

Rival bids from Amec/BT and Serco/Marconi were withdrawn in May 2003.The 10-year package was first advertised in the Official Journal way back in August 2001.

Negotiations between GeneSYS and the Highways Agency are continuing and, once complete, the team will be responsible for programme management, design, construction, financing and maintenance of an integrated transmission network across England. Financial close is anticipated next spring.

The work will revamp the agency's current communications system, which serves roadside equipment such as electronic signs, emergency phones and CCTV cameras, and allow it to use its latest technological improvements.

As part of the deal the successful bidder will have the opportunity to use spare capacity on the telecommunications system for commercial ventures such as mobile phone networks.