British Library tenders for book printing framework

Pamela Mardle
Monday, February 18, 2013

The British Library has put out a tender in a bid to establish a framework of printers to call upon for book production.

The contract seeks to gather a minimum of five printers "who are capable of producing books to the highest quality and at the same time providing value for money" to supply the UK's national library with books, leaflets and brochures.

The contract is worth up to £1m across four years, and will be consist of around 35 mini tenders, each worth between £1,000 and £25,000 for print runs from 200 up to 10,000 copies.

These will be distributed in mini work packages on an ad-hoc basis for the printers within the framework to tender for. The winning printer will generally receive the work from the British Library by PDF to be printed and bound.

Books requested from the framework may be paperback or hardback, printed in four-colour or black and white using digital or lithographic techniques. Formats vary between 187x124mm up to 311x232mm and paginations run from 80pp to 1064pp on paper quality between 80gsm cartridge to 150gsm matt art.

Printers will be generally required to deliver finished products to a UK warehouse, with the main place of delivery being the British Library's St Pancras, London location. Deliveries to the US could also be requested, although the logistics and frequency of overseas deliveries is yet to be decided by the tendering body.

The deadline for tendering for the contract is 12pm on 11 March. Those interested in tendering can visit to register for the pre-qualification questionnaire.

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