The West Midlands Public Services Network (WMPSN) today signed a preferred-supplier contract with Virgin Media Business in a deal which could save members more than £5 million per year.
WMPSN is a collaboration of public service bodies to procure and run a public services network (PSN) across the region, as part of the UK Government’s PSN programme.
Its purpose is to deliver a network infrastructure for seamless shared services across the West Midlands region, allowing schools, hospitals, emergency services and local government offices to share information and collaborate.
The project expects to save the first local authorities that have signed up to the partnership at least £1.5million per year – and this figure could increase to more than £5million per year as more organisations join.
Solihull Council led the procurement on behalf of WMPSN. The initial partners along with Solihull Council are Warwickshire County Council, Birmingham City Council and Worcestershire County Council. Other members of the programme board include West Midlands Police, Herefordshire County Council and the Black Country Local Authorities.
Councillor Robert Hulland, Solihull Council’s cabinet member for resources, said: “On behalf of the WMPSN, I am delighted to be able to announce Virgin Media Business as our preferred supplier. We are very much looking forward to setting the wheels in motion for this project, which will deliver substantial savings for all of the authorities involved in the partnership.
“The service has also been procured to enable any public service organisation in the West Midlands – including health, fire, police, third sector and local government – to enjoy these savings. Indeed, as more organisations join, the cost to all participants reduces, which will drive out greater savings.”
Mario Di Mascio, executive director of sales at Virgin Media Business, said “PSNs are a great way for councils to save costs today and invest for the future. By sharing services and the economies of scale that come from collaborative procurement, public sector agencies can transform the way they work and the services they provide citizens.
"Virgin Media Business has a strong heritage in the West Midlands both in the customers we serve and as a large employer in the region. It’s great that we’re able to continue to invest in the area and work in partnership with WMPSN to leverage the experience we've gained through our recent successes with the likes of CambridgeshirePSN, HPSN2, YHPSN and LondonPSN. We’re very much looking forward to working with Solihull Council and its partners to deliver a service they can be proud of.”