GSA moves ahead with reverse auctions

The General Services Administration plans to award a governmentwide contract for its Buyers.Gov program, which enables agencies to participate in so-called online reverse auctions.

In a pre-solicitation notice, GSA said that after a "successful pilot [program]," it now plans to award a permanent indefinite-delivery, indefinite-quantity governmentwide contract to implement the reverse auction feature offered on its Buyers.Gov site.

In a reverse auction, buyers specify the product they want to buy and the price they are willing to pay. Sellers of the product then compete to offer the best price for the product.

GSA's Federal Technology Service has been offering private reverse auctions since December 1999 as part of the Buyers.Gov portal. Buyers.Gov has conducted several large reverse auctions, valued at more than $1 million, including one for the Defense Finance and Accounting Service for printers and laptop computers.

GSA also said that it plans to enhance the Buyers.Gov site under a new pilot program that will offer the same functionality as reverse auctions, but will allow agencies to buy items besides information technology such as medical equipment.

GSA expects to release a draft request for proposals on FedBizOpps on or about June 5. The agency expects to release a formal request for proposals June 20.

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