Existing Public Procurement initiatives in the UK




Online Databases
SME’ s in the United Kingdom do not benefit from any funding when trying to bid for public sector contracts. However they can find out about tender opportunities through free web based opportunity portals. The main ones are these:

Supply2.gov.uk : a site that concentrates at informing about sub-threshold opportunities. This means opportunities below the EU threshold. Sub-thresholds do not have to be published on a centralised portal in the UK, so this portal only contains a fraction of what is normally available, tenders that public sector organisations decided from their own rules to publish on the portal.


Competefor.com: this website has been developed to help companies access opportunities related to the Olympic Games taking place in London in 2012. This website contains mainly supply chain opportunities. Supply chain opportunities are parts of tenders. The bigger companies would have won the overall delivery of a specific project, and on a second level, they are inviting companies to help them deliver various projects related to the first contract won


SBRI:  it is a programme that brings innovative solutions to specific public sector needs, by engaging a broad range of companies in competitions for ideas that result in short-term development contracts. Opportunities to sell innovative products can be found on their website.


Other databases can be found in the UK dealing with different specific sectors or groups of organisations (emergency services, schools, airport, utilities). Listing them all is probably near to impossible as procurement is an ever changing area, especially since a new government in the United Kingdom came into power.



Other help for SMEs
In the last few years, Local Authorities and business support organisations have developed support programmes to enable easier access by companies to their tendering opportunities. These followed various government reports on making it easier for companies and especially SMEs to tender for public sector contracts (a drive which originated at EU level).

Such support programmes included the development of meet the buyers events as well as free tender workshops for companies.

Contact your nearest Enterprise Europe Network office for further details as most of the offices are knowledgeable about their local business environment and also often offer procurement services.