£200m government print tender goes live


Crown Commercial Service (CCS) has opened a new print tender worth £200m as it seeks a single supplier to host and manage its new print buying platform.

CCS is partnering with YPO to put this framework contract in place
CCS is partnering with YPO to put this framework contract in place

In the contract notice CCS said the new system, Print Marketplace, will service the high-volume, low-spend print requirements across the public sector, enable public sector buyers with access to a “pre-qualified, dynamic and local supplier base”, and offer real-time instant pricing “across the print landscape”.

“The supplier shall provide a full end-to-end service including the management of: the system, the print supply chain and buyer registrations and support,” the notice said.

CCS is partnering with public sector procurement consortium Yorkshire Purchasing Organisation (YPO) to put this framework contract in place.

It compiled a list of answers to questions initially submitted following early supplier engagement regarding Print Marketplace, where it confirmed that the platform “will be available to customers who can define their requirements and manage their print job without the support of a traditional print management company”.

It added: “The Print Marketplace provider will be expected to onboard any print providers who register (and meet the relevant criteria) during the life of the agreement.

“The Print Marketplace should provide the customer with instant pricing based upon the customer’s specific requirements. We envisage that print providers can and will amend their rates regularly based on their own commercial considerations. However, the amendments required will be simple i.e. adapt their margin only.

“The Print Marketplace will be dynamic and, therefore, is not a catalogue of fixed prices for products but a system that produces quotes in real time based on customer specifications.”

CCS said the Print Marketplace must provide transparency of costs to allow the customer to select the provider which meets their requirements.

“CCS will require robust reporting data and will conduct regular benchmarking and audits of the print provider. The contract may also contain limits on the amount of work that each print provider can undertake/produce,” it added.

Products will be specified by customers but will include business cards, leaflets, brochures, posters, forms, newsletters, business stationery and general marketing literature.

The time limit for receipt of tenders or requests to participate is 3pm on 6 March. The contract will then start on 11 May 2020 and the end date is 10 May 2024.

APS Group was the big winner in a separate £300m CCS framework contract in 2016 when it secured the single supplier 'Lot 1' of the framework for 'fully managed end-to-end print and digital solutions'.

Places on the multi-supplier 'Lot 2' framework for 'tailored managed print solutions', were awarded to Corporate Document Services (CDS), Granby Marketing Services, HH Global, PSL Print Management, Williams Lea and Xerox.

That contract went live on 28 December 2016 and was originally due to end on 27 December 2018 but was subsequently extended to 27 December 2020.

CCS is an executive agency sponsored by the Cabinet Office, which aims to save money for public sector organisations through its frameworks.

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