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ZDS STATEMENT ON DESKTOP IV RULING: 'WE'RE STILL IN A BETTER POSITION'

 BUFFALO GROVE, Ill., Dec. 31 /PRNewswire/ -- Zenith Data Systems today released the following:
 Late yesterday, the General Services Administration's Board of Contract Appeals released portions of its Dec. 23 ruling on protests of the Air Force's Desktop IV contract. The contract had been awarded to Zenith Data Systems in September.
 "Even though two out of the mass of protest counts were granted, we're still in a better position than anyone else on Desktop IV," said ZDS Federal Systems Vice President Tom Buchsbaum.
 "Both the Air Force and the Board appear to be in agreement that ZDS was the clear winner in terms of a best-value offer, and we can still be considered as a candidate for award," he said.
 "Now that we've seen the ruling and the avenues it offers to the Air Force, our confidence is restored that ultimately we're going to win this thing," Buchsbaum said. "That's good news for us -- and for the government."
 According to the ruling:
 -- The board said it "(did) not necessarily disagree with the Air Force's conclusion that Zenith's (proposal) presented the best value." But the board did not agree with the Air Force's contention that an award to a combination of proposals had been properly considered.
 Buchsbaum said, "The Air Force conducted the Desktop IV procurement in a fair and diligent manner, so it's highly likely that the possibility of a dual award was fully considered and, quite reasonably, rejected.
 "The benefits to the government of a single-vendor award are well-known: increased equipment compatibility; decreased training requirements; and simplified ordering, logistics and spare-parts procedures. As the Defense Department learned during Operation Desert Storm, standardized equipment can really help win a war. And needless to say, higher volumes from one supplier can lead to lower prices and improved quality," Buchsbaum said.
 "In other words, awarding to a single reliable supplier like Zenith Data Systems was clearly the most efficient and cost-effective solution for the government. If the Air Force chooses to revisit' the dual- award issue, which the Board names as an option, we still think we'll come out on top," he said.
 -- ZDS is "puzzled," Buchsbaum said, by the board's ruling that some of the monitors that ZDS intended to supply under Desktop IV did not comply with the Trade Agreements Act.
 "We're certain that our monitors meet and exceed the legal requirements for substantial transformation' of offshore components during the assembly process, and that we are in total compliance with the Trade Agreements Act," Buchsbaum said.
 "We intend to appeal this aspect of the ruling, and are working to determine what the best course of action will be. There's no question in our mind that we'll win on this one," he said.
 In conclusion, Buchsbaum said, "Desktop IV is an innovative procurement and the Air Force should be applauded for how it was conducted.
 "And it's regrettable that federal PC purchasers will have to wait a little longer to buy high-performance, high-quality desktop computers at an attractive price.
 "In the meantime, we're going to continue to pursue Desktop IV vigorously -- and I like our chances."
 Zenith Data Systems, a Bull company, is a leading supplier of desktop and notebook computers, servers, monitors and related peripherals. The company's headquarters are in Buffalo Grove, Ill., and its Federal Systems office is in Herndon, Va. The company's primary facilities for worldwide engineering and North American manufacturing are in St. Joseph, Mich.
 ZDS successfully fulfilled the Air Force's Desktop I (1983-86) and Desktop II (1986-89) contracts.
 -0- 12/31/92
 /NOTE TO EDITORS: Zenith Data Systems is no longer part of Zenith Electronics Corporation. On second reference, please refer to the company as "ZDS" or "Zenith Data," not "Zenith."/
 /CONTACT: Matt Mirapaul of ZDS, 708-808-4848/


CO: Zenith Data Systems ST: Illinois IN: CPR SU:

GK -- NY026 -- 0926 12/31/92 13:14 EST
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Date:Dec 31, 1992
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