Collaborating with other stakeholders in the procurement processes
To improve the conditions for healthy competition suppliers may use subcontractors and other partners in procurements. This enables small and medium-sized businesses to participate in public procurements. There are different categories of subcontractors in the context of procurement.
The information on this page concerns procurements in accordance with:
- the Public Procurement Act (LOU)
- the Act on Procurement in the Water, Energy, Transport and Postal Services Sectors (LUF)
Depending on how the requirements are drawn up and worded, you have the right, as a supplier, to use subcontractors. The subcontractors to be listed in the tender is basically determined by what has been requested in the tender documents.
Are you considering teaming up with one or more companies and submitting a joint tender, or using subcontractors? Ensure that you have described clearly how you will fulfil the different requirements in the procurement.
It is always the supplier that has been awarded the contract that is responsible for fulfilling the contract. However, the procuring organisation may want to ensure that the subcontractor has also fulfilled their obligations in terms of payment of taxes and fees.
The procuring organisation may require the supplier to be a particular form of legal entity in order to sign the contract.
Collaborating with subcontractors or other partners
If you want to use a subcontractor it is advisable to be aware of the applicable rules. These differ depending on how the supplier collaborates with other companies, and it is therefore important to distinguish between the various forms of partnership.
Primarily, there are three alternatives for a supplier who wishes to partner with other companies. These alternatives are:
- relying on the capacity of other companies
- using sub-contractors, or
- submitting a joint tender together with other suppliers.
Calling on the capacity of other companies
If specific capacity requirements are set as part of supplier qualifications, a supplier may call on another company’s capacity to fulfil the requirements, and be able to participate in a procurement. If so, the supplier must be able to show that they have access to these resources throughout the term of the contract.
Hiring subcontractors to fulfil a contract
A supplier may also hire a subcontractor for an assignment during the contract term. It is possible for the subcontractor to perform a service, or deliver a good, as part of the delivery.
Submitting a joint tender together with other suppliers
Many suppliers also have the opportunity to participate in a procurement as a group, with no requirements that the group is a particular form of legal entity. If required, a procuring organisation can require that the group of suppliers must be a certain form of legal entity if they are awarded the contract. If so, it must be clear from the tender documents what form of legal entity is required.
Companies may collaborate
Companies may collaborate in procurements, on the condition that there are no provisions in competition law preventing collaboration between suppliers.