Leading electronic tendering provider Millstream has been awarded a contract to run Wales’ national e-procurement database, which handles tenders worth around £4.3billion annually.
The Welsh Government (Llywodraeth Cymru) has appointed Millstream to design and run a new-look portal for all public sector tenders, ranging from construction and transport to IT and healthcare.
A number of European governments and public authorities now handle procurement electronically in order to save money and time and to comply with the latest EU legislation.
As the only company providing national public procurement websites for several European member states, Millstream has operated the national procurement portal for Norway for the past seven years and the Public Contracts Scotland portal for the past five years, on behalf of the Scottish Government. Millstream also provided the Irish Government’s eTenders website from 2003 until 2012.
The new look portal will be released in June.
Managing director Tim Williams said: “We are delighted to be able to bring the experience we have gained in Ireland, Norway and Scotland to deliver an effective and fully road-tested service for Wales. The Welsh Government has a very innovative and practically focused approach to procurement and we look forward to contributing to its further success.
“This is a key contract for us, which comes on the back of extensions to our existing contracts with Public Contracts Scotland and the Doffin portal in Norway and underlines our ability to deliver a simple to use system that is reliable and effective.
“The national portals have helped to standardise tendering processes into one online system for both purchasers in the public sector and private sector suppliers, which opens up opportunities for companies while saving both time and public money.”
EU legislation means that contracting authorities must adhere to transparent, non-discriminatory and proportional principles when purchasing goods and services. They must also advertise all contracts above a certain value in the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU).
Millstream’s portals simplify the creation and management of the tender documentation required by EU and UK regulations.
The company has managed Public Contracts Scotland since 2006 and has provided the Doffin portal for the Norwegian Agency for Public Management and eGovernment (Difi) since 2005.
As well as operating procurement portals for national governments, Millstream runs the Tenders Direct website, which provides private companies with comprehensive information on new business opportunities from the public sector, such as the government, local authorities, emergency services, NHS trusts and the armed forces.
It also runs myTenders, a tender publication and management service used by more than 700 public organisations in the UK to submit fully compliant contract notices to the OJEU and Contracts Finder, as well as publicising them on the organisation’s own website.