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Auction contracts awarded.

GSA has awarded contracts to four companies to run reverse auctions through its website, www.buyers.gov.

The contractors will serve as enablers, providing auction software and support, including training for procurement personnel and vendors. They will also market reverse auctions to agencies that have not used the procedure before.

In a reverse auction, vendors bid against each other in real-time online competitions for contracts. A GSA study last year said, "Cost savings through online reverse auction range between two and 20% and in some cases as high as 50%."

Some small contractors are worried that the emphasis on the lowest price can put them at a disadvantage. The reverse auction procedure also allows contracting officers to limit bidding to a few invited companies.

So far, reverse auctions have been used primarily for purchases of off-the-shelf products or commodities, such as heating oil and road salt, but they can be used for services as well.

The auction contracts were awarded to Orbis Online Inc. of San Antonio; B2e Markets Inc. of Rockville, MD; Computer Information Specialist Inc. of Silver Spring, MD; and NB Ventures Global eProcure of Clark, NJ.
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Publication:Set-Aside Alert
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Aug 23, 2002
Words:189
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