Capgemini to build €8m EU Big Data portal

Several EU flags hoisted outside a building

The European Commission (EC) has contracted Capgemini to build an 8 million Big Data portal across Europe, pulling in public datasets from 39 countries.

The body aims to make the Open Data Portal its core platform through which all European public data will be available to any citizen with internet access.

Capgemini will head up a consortium of organisations and subcontractors, including the Open Data Institute and the University of Southampton, to develop, launch and operate the portal.

The three-year contract will also see the consortium ensure governments publish and supply open datasets to the project, while subcontractors will be tasked with creating products and services based on the data.

European Union (EU)-specific data will include its aid spend per country, down to detailed information on research projects.

Dinand Tinholt, VP and EU lead at Capgemini, said: "More and more volumes of data are published every day, every hour, every minute, every second across every geography large and small.

"With the increasing digitisation of society, the amount of data across the world is set to increase exponentially.

"This strategic project is at the heart of all the open and Big Data initiatives of public administrations across Europe.

"It will also serve as a platform to engage with private players, of all sizes, operating in the field of open data and predictive analytics."

The consortium will earn up to 8 million, with the money coming from the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF), an EU quango whose purpose is to deploy IT infrastructure that helps businesses, people and governments across Europe collaborate.

The news comes after the EC announced a tender for its first cloud services last month, seeking suppliers to provide it with Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) cloud, public IaaS cloud and public Platform-as-a-Service cloud services.

The two-year contract would see the EC gain 2,500 virtual machines and 2,500TB of virtual storage equivalent to around 15 per cent of the EC's in-house capacity.