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April 16, 2020

Palantir Adds COVID-19 Deal to Growing List of U.S. Contracts

George Leopold

Federal health officials are reportedly using Palantir Technologies’ Gotham big data analytics platform in their efforts to mount a response to COVID-19.

Forbes.com reported late last week that a unit within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) awarded Palantir a $17.3 million contract in early April for “COVID-19 emergency response.” The website said the contract covers Gotham licenses for an HHS unit called the Program Support Center. The agreement was reportedly signed on April 10.

Palantir, Palo Alto, Calif., was co-founded by Peter Thiel, an early Facebook (NASDAQ: FB) backer.

The Gotham platform uses big data analysis techniques to enable customers to combine large amounts of structured and unstructured data “into a single coherent data asset,” then analyze it. The platform has previously been used for applications like spotting health care fraud.

Palantir confirmed to Datanami that it has an HHS contract to work on COVID-19, but did not elaborate.

Palantir has also supplied data mining software to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to identify insider-trading schemes. It won a five-year, $90 million contract from the SEC in November 2016. The agency is believed to be using Palantir’s Metropolis platform specifically designed, according to the company’s web site, “to easily integrate data from disparate source systems for analysis.”

Palantir also supplies data mining and database technologies to several U.S. military branches, including U.S. Special Forces Command. Last month, it beat out long-time DoD contractor Raytheon for a sole-source contract worth $80 million to supply the Navy with a logistics management system.

The Washington Post reported that the Navy contract is among multiple Palantir deals with Pentagon agencies since last year.

–Editor’s note: This story has been updated with confirmation of Palantir’s HHS contract.

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