Incumbent SOS International has won a lengthy competitive review for a $9.9M PR contract to support U.S. forces in Afghanistan.

SOSI has handled the account since winning it in an open competition in 2006.

The Army oversaw the RFP process, which started last March, as it sought proposals for a range of public affairs services, including media monitoring, strategic communications support, social media, and press events.

The challenging PR work is aimed to build and maintain support for the U.S. mission among the Afghan population in the face of a relentless insurgency.

Reston, Va.-based SOSI, which provides a range of services to support the military, has been tapped for a one-year contract that carries four option years. A contracting official asked how many firms submitted proposals told O’Dwyer’s to file a Freedom of Information Act request.

"SOS International is proud to have been trusted with the important work of supporting communications efforts in Afghanistan," Joseph Mott, assistant VP, corporate operations, for SOSI told O'Dwyer's. "This continuing mission is a reflection of our years of experience operating in critical environments and a compliment to the skilled and dedicated members of our team."

Firms handling similar work with the military in recent years include The Rendon Group and Fulcra Worldwide, the former Lincoln Group.

In addition to its PR work in Afghanistan, SOSI has teamed with Raytheon for a multimillion-dollar contract to “stand up and manage” the Afghanistan Advanced Border Management Academy, the training center for Afghan customs and narcotics officers. It also works for the U.S. military in Kuwait and Kyrgyzstan, among other assignments.

President Obama said 33,000 troops will be pulled out of Afghanistan by next September, the start of a draw-down in the decade-long war kicked off after 9/11. Ten thousand U.S. troops are expected to be out by the end of 2011.