132-33 - Price for a Palantir server, priced per core. $141k per core. Includes 1 year of "maintenance" (support and software upgrades).
132-34 - This is the maintenance for second year on. $28k per core.
How many users can a core support? I dunno. But let's say you can serve 50 people off of a 4-core system (you can redo the math for the number of users).
You initial purchase is $564k. Or about $11k per user.
Each year after that, if you want software updates, it'll cost you $113k or or about $2.2k per year per user.
So let's say you use the system for 3 years. That's over $15k of software per user over that time.
Plus there's training ~$2k per user. Or another $100k in training costs.
And then who knows how many hours of engineering and "ninja" services. But a CONUS (within the U.S.) FSR is billed at about $300k per year for a full-time person on staff. Let's say you need two of them to support those 50 users.
Added up for 3 years of Palantir: $1.5million
I'll let you decide if that's good value, but that works out to around $30k per user partial TCO (not including power, security, networking, local IT staff support, etc.).
Your later comment about the crack model is also spot on. There's a fairly long list of disgruntled places that bought on discount and are now being hit with huge O&M maintenance fees and are looking for a way out. I think they're government customers are slowly going away.
They're starting to show up more overseas here. Palantir recently opened up a Seoul office. But how much of whatever business they get out of it is government and how much of it is commercial is anybody's guess.
I am not quite sure if even this community quite understands what Palantir is and does. Things aren't quite what they appear to be.
When I was doing enterprise financial software it wasn't uncommon for contracts to run in the millions per year.
I should have also added to my original post, this is their GSA schedule. For these specific line-items, the government considers this the "prenegotiated lowest price". This simplifies purchasing. So if somebody in the government wants buy another core (item 132-33) they just ring up Palantir or their GSA schedule VAR (reseller) and ask for a 132-33 volume:1 and they know that it'll cost $141k and be good for 1 year of O&M.
The downside of being on the GSA schedule is that it means that there are limits on your ability to change prices year to year to reflect a change in business environment. Say next year you want to drop the price by 50%. That's not allowed, since it would basically mean that you weren't selling your software at the lowest possible prenegotiated price. Similarly if you want to increase it, you're limited in that as well. I think the +- variance can't exceed 10% in a single 12 month period, but I might be wrong. The other downside is that this basically provides your prices in public so your competitors can see what you charge, which can be critical information in contract bids.
There's always a loophole. For example, convince your customer to not buy off of the GSA and sell them a "package" at some discount off of GSA. That "package" counts as a different SKU and the GSA doesn't apply. So for example, you could make a Palantir "starter kit" composed of
2 core license (normally $282k)
1 extra year of O&M maintenance for both cores (normally $56k)
500 hours of Ninja Services @ $150/hr (normally $98k)
500 hours of CONUS FSR Service @ $120/hr (normally $73k)
Any government purchaser would fall over themselves to try to make this happen since it's a >30% discount off of the normal GSA schedule prices (which they can refer to and are governed by various rules). This looks fantastic on their yearly performance eval "-saved government $160k on purchase of Palantir package deal"
This is the crack model. When the O&M runs out in two years and they come asking for more, well, there's no deal anymore, and the GSA schedule prices on O&M and people have gone up 20% in that time.
edit keep in mind that this company has raised almost a billion dollars and is valued at something like $9 billion dollars.
And now particular plans to sell or go public. This keeps all their financials private and the fact that they have to keep doing new fundraising rounds every few months does not make me think they're making money. At $9bil valuation, finding a buyer is going to be really tough.
They're a really weird company to deal with too. A bit cultish, the CEO is kind of flake the few times I've met him at their conferences. I get the impression that he's not really running the show, he's impossibly unqualified with zero history in any of the spaces they sell into and no business background of any useful type.
Their offices are nice, loads of free great food, but when people emerge from their offices for lunch it looks like they're on a death march. If you ask any of them if they like it there you'll always get a blank stare and a "I love it at Palantir, Palantir is great" answer.
Combined with the track jackets and sketchy legal history (well worth a read), it's kind of off-putting.
Read the full complaint here for the juicy details: http://www.scribd.com/doc/36371667/i2-v-palantir-080910
Note that all the Palantir employees involved in this suit are still high-ranking Palantir executives.
There is also the case of the Wikileaks/HBGary fiaso; the main individual involved in that mess is still a high ranking Palantir employee as well.
The fraud perpetrated by Palantir was actually so organized and so bad (they set up an entirely fake front company in another state), that the suing company asked the judge for the case to be tried under RICO rules...which are basically rules put in place to fight the mafia. The judge agreed that it qualified under the law (immediately tripling any damages that would have been awarded) and Palantir settled with i2 immediately after that and the case was dropped.
Word on the street is the settlement was for an almost 9 figure sum and Palantir immediately went into another fundraising round to cover the loss and sustain operations.
The employees (all senior execs) at the center of the fraud kept their jobs but didn't show their faces in public for a couple years (they had been acting as a de facto spokespeople during trade events). They're back in the public eye now.
Yes, that's correct, Palantir is currently run by people who's activities were qualified by a judge as falling under legal guidelines setup to fight the Mob.
You can say what you want about the big defense contractors, incompetence and lobbying and all that (which Palantir does in spades and has even gotten in trouble for not disclosing some lobbying deals) but mafioso they ain't.
Some more here: http://venturebeat.com/2011/02/16/palantirs-third-black-eye-...
This isn't even touching the HBGary union busting scheme and the Bank of America anti-Wikileaks proposal. And other very anti-democratic activities.
I don't know what happened to the employee with the anti-Wikileaks deal, but the one with HBGary was the stuff of dystopian nightmares. The employee responsible was publicly terminated but actually it turns out was just sent away for a bit and then quietly either rehired or just turned back up to a job he never lost. Nobody would have ever known about this if Anonymous hadn't had a very public fight with the CEO of HBGary Federal and hacked their network to pull down some documents, revealing an ongoing 3-way partnership with Palantir).
They appear to be offering a revolving door to high level government supporters who then later become "consultants" for the company. http://www.mausstrategicconsulting.com/topical-analysis-blog...
"such as former head of the National Counterterrorism Center Michael E Leiter who had said to himself “There’s Karp with his hair and his outfit—he doesn’t look like me or the other people that work for me,” before becoming a supporter and then consultant for Palantir"
and heavy lobbying (which explains some of the bizarre support they get in congress while the generals go blue in the face arguing against them)
"It has also been active in formal political lobbying, recruiting former senators John Braux and Trent Lott, (5) with its lobbying expenditures increasing steadily from 2010 to 2013 when its total annual investment exceeded $1.1 million"
more examples http://www.republicreport.org/2014/palantir-zach-wamp/
I've heard rumors that even the CIA is trying to distance themselves from them and find alternatives.
They've done a fantastic job at disrupting the link-chart market (which is surprisingly robust) and making it seem like customers are buying something else, but at 2-3x the price of the competition. They hide their sales guys as "forward deployed engineers" and obfuscate their sales process to the point where it doesn't seem like you've ever dealt with the kind of sketchy enterprise sales goon you'd deal with from any of their competitors.
They're very smart.
> They hide their sales guys as "forward deployed engineers" and obfuscate their sales process to the point where it doesn't seem like you've ever dealt with the kind of sketchy enterprise sales goon you'd deal with from any of their competitors.
Really? I've known a couple of forward deployed engineers there, and I assure you, they're not salespeople.
I think these days they've deobfuscated the roles a bit. But back during this discussion, they were definitely hiring and mixing in sales people with their "deployed" engineers. Most of these guys would probably be sales engineers somewhere else, relegated to a life of doing canned demos for commission scraps.
It's actually kind of smart from a sales POV, embed your sales guy in the government site, call them engineers and let them have unlimited upsell opportunities.
You've basically tricked your customer to put one of your sales guys on staff.
From a customer POV, when you figure out the guy your paying $300k/yr to have on-site is just triaging issues and calling in real engineers to spot shoot issues, then spending their downtime trying to sell more software inside your organization it's kind of irritating.
They should have been doing implementation and FSR duties. If they were doing core product development while on Federal Contract, the government owns that software now. If it hasn't been turned over, source and all, it could be grounds for an IG investigation.
That is very serious stuff, so I hope you can qualify what you mean by "serious software development".
As for FDE's doing sales, just look at the current job openings. The BD team is full of FDE openings. What exactly do you think those FDEs do on the sales team?
Since everybody who touches the customer has the same title (except for Mission Specialists), it's easy for Palantir to start a deployment with non-sales FDE's, then swap them out for sales FDE's and start working the organization.
It's sketchy, but it's super smart if they're careful about it.
My guess is your estimates are really conservative.
That system definitely has problems (it's terrible and sucks in many places), but it's a system of much larger capability and complexity than Palantir.
Comparing Palantir to it is like comparing a wheel to a an entire transport system. Palantir could comfortably fit in as a single capabilty in DCGS-A (and probably do a better job than the stuff currently filling in that role), but it could never replace it.
It's basically just a federated search, mediocre map and halfway decent link-analysis tool. But ask it to do anything even remotely outside of those three things and you're basically dead in the water as it doesn't offer anything relevant to all the other millions of things DCGS-A provides. DCGS-A is more than just some analytic tools.
The reason it's not part of DCGS-A is very political and complex and as much Palantir's doing as the Army's, but the answer is that the components that are on DCGS-A that basically do what Palantir does were selected because they're cheaper over the long run, even if a bit clunky. For example, on the client side, there's presently a forward looking mandate from big Army to drop flash and java clients (because they're an IT administrative menace). Palantir's front end is Java.
I would feel way safer if the IC & military disabled Flash & Java in their browsers, along with the rest of the web. Those two plugins have shaped up to be quite the vehicles for zero-days.
The last big vendor PO I had to look at put every professional services line item at $300-360/hr with $320 being about average.
People should go and see what small packages from Oracle, HP, Tibco & IBM cost. It's incredible.
i2 was selling their software at some fraction of Palantir's and in the DoD space it's basically as ubiquitous as Microsoft Office. Palantir is everywhere, but it doesn't end up being used nearly as much.
My company spends tens of millions per year on some really awful enterprise software unfortunately.
Source: sold & implemented alot of software for the gubbmint.
Then months and months of post deployment tweaking and continuous work to keep the system alive and fix issues when some of the data sources change schemas or something.
I've heard things like average time from purchase to full deployment is something like 9 months. But from my time dealing with them I think it's much longer.
edit never mind, after reviewing your comment history, it looks like you probably work for Palantir. You should probably disclose that. I stand by my comments about deployment times.
$150k/core...say you run it on a cluster of relatively puny machines ...($150k * 4 cores) on a 4 node cluster is already above $2m.
That's exactly what Palantir is... companies like (SAP/Oracle)+(Accenture/Deloitte/IBM) can't compete with this since the "Just hire a few data scientists" talent is near impossible to attract without the sexiness of a company like Palantir. Palantir packages the whole thing up in a nice bow. Having spent a lot of time in enterprise software (mainly SAP), Palantir's value proposition is extremely attractive to BigGov and BigCo, with largely a higher rate of success and lower cost.
Their principle competitor is http://www-03.ibm.com/software/products/en/analysts-notebook
They used to have a free trial you could run via java webstart on their website, but they've taken it down.
Here's a video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f86VKjFSMJE
It's big data in the sense that using google's search box is big data. But from my time using their demo a couple years ago, the actual tool is fairly small in focus. I don't even think the chart view can show more than a few hundred things.
Umm, a bit of shell scripting may also be required.
I would bet Oracle (or MS/IBM) is getting a hefty chunk of that.
OCONUS FSR Support hourly rate. OCONUS rates will be billed for Services performed in a warzone. Normal business hours are defined as a 12-hour work day (rate is 15% more outside of normal business hours). $ 195.47
But this is probably helpful for people getting into consulting to see what hourly rates are for this kind of work. In my experience these rates are actually fairly cheap. I'm used to seeing $170-200 for most things billed to the government.
But I've also heard Palantir has fairly conservative pay caps, that might account for the low rates.
e.g. After 4 calendar months, $5000, after 8, $10,000.
Hazard pay is usually some percentage on top of base pay and if you're "lucky" and qualify for "living condition pay" it's another percentage on top of that. I have some associates here in the D.C. area that tell me at the height of the Iraq War they were pulling down ~$300k/yr all added up, on base salaries of $80-90k.
This is actually one of the reasons that doing business with the government is less lucrative than the commercial industry (for products and services which are comparable, many are things only sold to the government, so there is no hesitation about pricing them through the roof).
As you can imagine, one of the ways that duplicitous federal contractors get around the idea of having to sell to the government for less than their normal prices is to structure their products/services as different (and therefore not apples to apples comparable).
I still would bet that the price that they charge Goldman Sachs (just as an example, I don't actually know which investment banks are using their product) is higher than what they charge for any individual government client.
Also, I think it's probably worth noting that the maximum addressable customer base for their products for federal agencies is way smaller than the equivalent number of financial customers. There's really only a handful of agencies that have this capability (I'd guess more than a handful, but probably less than a dozen).
All big organizations do bad things in specific cases and have problems that need to be addressed - the NYPD is no different. For every one of these examples I can point to a hundred cases where some officer put their life on the line to do their job and help do their part to make NYC a decent place to live.
To give you an idea of how big the NYPD is as an organization, it's about a third larger than the active duty Army of Australia.
My couple times working with them showed most of the officers I encountered to be genuinely concerned about their city and a strong desire to do a good and fair job.
And yes of course there's lots of rallying together and supporting each other, even when that support often doesn't make sense to an outsider. But they really don't have anybody else they can rely on for their safety and support. And they take enormous flak and disrespect from the public on a daily basis for pretty much exercising any aspect of their function.
But as a large police force, the NYPD is basically a model for other large municiple forces and are heads and tails above deeply problematic large forces like the LAPD.
>For every one of these examples I can point to a hundred cases where some officer put their life on the line to do their job and help do their part to make NYC a decent place to live.
Over 500 million times?
Yes, congratulations, you know how to multiply. You know it was a figure of speech.
Anybody can make lists of good and bad deeds about an organization and point to why that list exemplifies some preconceived notion you already have.
Here's my list after 2 minutes of barely looking
You're changing the subject. The point is, everyone who has lived here for a significant amount of time (and who doesn't have their head in the sand) knows, from direct experience, how profoundly dysfunctional (and disturbingly corrupt) the NYPD is, from the top down.
I disagree that they're a dysfunctional and corrupt organization from the top-down. They aren't free from blame, but they aren't some mob of uniformed gangsters either.
That may place it much further along the spectrum towards a "mob-like" organization than you would be comfortable admitting.
Anyway, from their Gotham page https://www.palantir.com/palantir-gotham/
"Working closely with the customer, our engineers integrate and map all of the relevant source data—regardless of type or volume—into a single, coherent model.
Once the model has been created, data flows continuously from its sources into the Palantir Gotham platform.
They can search across all of their data sources at once, visualize relationships, explore divergent hypotheses, discover unknown connections,
Pretty much my 2009 pitch, and in the hindsight i see that my main weakness was that i couldn't even imagine $150K/core. Man, it is imagination what separates losers from winners! :)
Imagination and lucrative government contracts.
Unify search, build semantic links.
It was a very manually intensive tool based on what I saw. Very little automation, more like those pictures and strings you see in crime shows on TV...but on a computer.