SME2GO project

REQUEST FOR QUOTATION (RFQ)

Business opportunities from non-European markets 30.06.2016

1.    CONTRACTING ENTITY

The contracting entity of this tender invitation is Turku Science Park Ltd, business-id 2322323-1, address: Joukahaisenkatu 3-5 A, 20520 Turku, Finland. Turku Science Park Ltd is an independent and impartial specialist company, who has promoted the business operations of SMEs based on leading know-how for more than 25 years. The services of Turku Science Park Oy are divided in accordance with the business life cycle into services for start-up companies, growth and development services, and internationalization services. More information about Turku Science Park Ltd can be found at http://www.turkusciencepark.com. Later in this request for quotation Turku Science Park Ltd will be referred to as buyer.

This procurement is done as a joint procurement with development company Posintra Oy, business id 1481499-6. Posintra provides services for entrepreneurs planning or starting their first company, development services of existing businesses and development projects supporting the business life in the Eastern Uusimaa region. The company also participates in international research and development projects. More information about Posintra can be found at www.posintra.fi.

2.    OBJECT OF THE RFQ

With this RFQ the buyer is looking for one or several service providers, who can offer best and most applicable market driven business cases at one or more markets it/they are most specialized in. The business cases should be about needs for smart city related technologies and solutions within promising markets outside the European Economic Free Trade Area (EFTA). The buyer is looking for up to eight (8) potential smart city business cases that could be acted upon in practice within a reasonable time frame by a consortia of SME companies. The business cases should be available and presented to the buyer by November 30, 2016. A more detailed description of the procurement is given in sections 3 and 4 of this RFQ.

3.     BACKGROUND OF THE PROCUREMENT

3.1       SME2GO – Central Baltic Region Smart City Solutions for Global Cities

The procurement described in this RFQ is funded with the support of SME2GO project. SME2GO is an EU funded growth project established to increase cooperation and exports of smart city solutions from the Central Baltic area to new and expanding markets. The main part of this project funding comes from Interreg Central Baltic –program (Priority P1 Competitive economy, specific objective 1.3). Later in this document the name SME2GO will be used as a project identifier.

SME2GO will improve the competitiveness of smart city solutions developing SMEs in the Central Baltic region. For the first time in history the majority of people live in cities. Urbanization is reaching its extremes and megacities are facing huge challenges in providing even basic services for their inhabitants. There is a great need for more efficient, sustainable, and smart city solutions as the urban population continues to grow.

Solutions for smart cities and innovative urban environments will be the main area of investment in many parts of Africa, Asia, and South-America within the next decade. Smart city solutions are products, systems, and services that enable sustainable and resource-efficient development of modern cities. This includes solutions for the way we live, move, use energy, and construct our cities.

The Central Baltic region has come far in the development of such solutions. In many cases the cutting-edge solutions are developed within a small or medium-sized enterprise, where the knowledge and experience in doing business with new markets is lacking. By increasing the cooperation among companies offering smart city solutions, the Central Baltic region can create a competitive edge and offer superior system solutions meeting the needs of the megacities.

The main overall objective of the project is to improve the competitiveness and export capabilities of smart city solution providing SMEs in the Central Baltic region. As a result, during the project 3-5 cross-border consortia of Central Baltic smart city SMEs is formed and 2-3 new sales in relevant target markets achieved either during or shortly (1-2yrs) after the project implementation. The project’s main objective of improving the competitiveness and export capabilities of smart city solution providing SMEs in the Central Baltic region by forming cross-border consortia is directly related to the project’s objectives as it promotes cooperation and entry into new markets. The target group of smart city SMEs directly supports the EU objective of smart growth. Additionally, SME2Go will help, for its part, further the Central Baltic and European Union determined need for more exports, smarter technologies and the need to create prosperity via more business.

The SME2GO project is run by five partners from the Central Baltic region. The following organizations in Sweden, Finland and Estonia are involved: Swedish Incubators & Science Parks (Sweden), Västerås Science Park (Sweden), Tallinn Science Park Tehnopol (Estonia), Turku Science Park (Finland), Posintra (Finland).

Information about SME2GO is available at www.sme2go.eu.

     3.2        Compilation of business intelligence about 8 most potential smart city new markets

The main task of this objective is to compile information on potential business opportunities in new markets.

The intent of this procurement is to acquire up to eight (8) market driven business cases from eight different markets. The business cases should be about needs for smart city related technologies and solutions within promising markets outside the European Economic Free Trade Area (EFTA).

The business cases may contain information about the following aspects:

-          Market forces and trends;

-          Interest rates, exchange rates, inflation, currency fluctuations;

-          Buying habits;

-          Market success factors;

-          Skills and technologies which the market needs – 1-3 detailed opportunities in order of urgency;

-          Descriptions of most acute and potential business opportunities

-          Business risks on the market, corruption index;

-          Key tax laws, regulations and trade restrictions to be aware of;

-          Potential key customers;

-          Pricing and distribution strategies;

-          Industry cost structure;

-          Logistical environment;

-          Level of public services (water, waste management, energy);

-          Language skill requirements;

-          Availability of local workforce;

-          Societal requirements;

-          Typical time to market;

-          Availability of local market support;

-          Estimated cost of entering the market;

-          A description of provider’s presence on the market it is providing an offer for.

At least one tangible business need within smart city technologies and services area per market.

4.    CONTENTS OF THE QUOTATION

A free form proposal document shall consist of items described in the sections 4.1 – 4.5 of this RFQ. In addition, a provider shall, in his proposal, provide information described in section 4.6. Buyer evaluates and scores the received proposals according to the criteria described in section 7 of this RFQ.

In this procurement, proposals will be approved so that a provider can offer only one (1) business case from its most specialized area or several business cases in one document.

If a provider offers reports (business cases) from more than one market, must each report be clearly described and priced as separate entities to make comparison of proposals possible.

Buyer assesses and scores the quotations according to comparison criteria mentioned later in this document. Buyer chooses a provider who presents the best overall offer for each market or business case. In total we may choose up to eight (8) parties to make contracts with.

4.1           Description of how information for the reports will be compiled

A provider shall describe the work methodology of compiling information for the business case(s) it is offering. The description shall include references to the topics mentioned in paragraph 3.2 of this RFQ.

Buyer encourages providers to show their skills, market knowledge and actively used good practices.

4.2           Description of provider’s know-how in smart city environment and technologies

Any prior know-how related to technologies and being involved in building smart cities shall be described in a concise manner. Describe all the technologies you have first-hand know-how of and have worked with, which could be applied to developing better urban life in a smart way.

4.3           Expertise, market experiences and references

A provider shall describe its experience on the market offered and provide a description of its references within the markets and smart city related technologies. A provider shall describe all relevant expertise that its team possesses in the areas of this RFQ.

4.4           Estimated availability and short description of practical business cases

We are looking for business cases that could be acted upon in practice within a reasonable time frame by a consortia of SME companies. A provider shall give a short description and its best realistic estimate of availability of such potential business cases in its market report.

4.5           Delivery time and reliability

In the quotation a provider shall give a delivery time for the service and a description and track record of its delivery reliability.

4.6           Other aspects relevant to the quotation

Buyer and Posintra Oy will nominate contact persons to support this procurement and arrange appropriate joint meetings for the follow-up of this procurement.

The chosen service provider(s) will report of the progress of the work regularly to buyer. In case several service providers are chosen, they shall participate in joint meetings according to buyer’s request.

Business cases shall be written in English language. Reports are approved by buyer and Posintra Oy together. Report shall include descriptions of performed activities and their results as well as suggestions for further actions.

Each quotation shall be written in English language. Maximum length of a quotation document shall not exceed 5 A4-pages/market. This does not include reference information of the team intended for the work.

A provider commits to perform the actions described in its quotation. Quotation should be valid until 30.9.2016. All actions shall be performed by 30.11.2016.

5      PROCUREMENT VALUE AND PRICE

Buyer and Posintra Oy have together reserved a total sum of 57.000 (VAT 0) euros for financing procurement of up to 8 business cases.

Quoted price shall be clearly specified according to each market and/or business case quoted.

Quoted prices shall include complete compensations for all services to produce the reports. No other compensations for excess hours, travel, accommodation, waiting, reserve time, delivery or handling costs etc. are paid.

Quotation shall be given as a fixed price, with VAT described separately.

Buyer and Posintra Oy will make payments against invoices and payment terms as agreed later in a procurement contract.  

6      ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS

In order to participate in the tendering process a provider has to be registered in all the commercial and legal registers required by the laws of its resident country before the due date of this RFQ. For Finnish providers the contracting entity will check providers´ registration from YTJ.

A service provider shall have all taxes, pension fees and other legally binding payments made. As evidence of this the chosen service provider shall, after the procurement decision and without delay deliver a proof of tax payment or tax debt statement or other statement of approved tax payment plan and a statement about pension insurance or a valid and approved payment plan.

A provider must show its ability to perform the service by presenting a concise description of education, language skills and professional qualifications of the persons who will be responsible for providing the service. In addition, a provider must describe how it intends to use subcontractors, if any. In such case the subcontractors must be named and corresponding information has to be submitted about them too.

In addition to the above mentioned eligibility requirements, a provider shall present in its quotation a free form description of its way of conducting sustainable and responsible business. These descriptions are not criteria for selection and they will not be compared between providers.

7      SELECTION CRITERIA

Selection of service providers will be made among quotations given by those providers who fulfill the eligibility requirements. The choice is based on overall economic affordability. Assessment of overall economic affordability puts the received quotations under scrutiny based on the following criteria:

Quality – max 70 points

In quality based evaluation the buyer ranks and scores the received quotations according to the following comparison criteria:

-            section 4.1 of the RFQ, description of how information for the reports will be compiled – max 10 points

-            section 4.2 of the RFQ, description of provider’s know-how in smart city environment and technologies – max 15 points

-            section 4.3 of the RFQ, expertise, market experiences and references – max 20 points

-            section 4.4 of the RFQ, estimated availability of practical business cases – max 20 points

-            section 4.5 of the RFQ, delivery time and reliability – max 5 points

Price – max 30 points

-          When comparing prices the buyer scores the received quotations as follows:

most affordable overall price / overall price of quotation under evaluation x 30 points

8      SUBMISSION OF QUOTATION

A quotation shall be submitted by 16.8.2016 at 12 o’clock by electronic means to: sami.uusitalo@turkusciencepark.com, marked with the subject: Quotation SME2GO markets. A provider must make sure that its quotation has been received. Chosen service providers shall supply to the buyer a signed written copy of its quotation immediately after the procurement decision has been announced.

9      CONTRACTING PROCEDURE AND DECISION MAKING

The procurement applies an open procedure. The request for quotation has been published on the buyers own website www.turkusciencepark.com/sme2go, on Posintra’s website www.posintra.fi, on the website of the project www.sme2go.eu and in the HILMA – Public procurement - service www.hankintailmoitukset.fi.

Quotations are accepted so that a provider can quote only a market report (business case) of a single market or market reports from multiple markets up to eight (8) reports.

Any potential questions for further details about the procurement shall be made by email by 5.8.2016 at 15 o’clock to sami.uusitalo@turkusciencepark.com. In order to guarantee equal treatment of providers answers to all received questions will be published on the buyer’s website www.turkusciencpark.com/sme2go latest on 8.8. at 15 o’clock.

The selection will be made according to the selection criteria described in the RFQ among providers who fulfill the eligibility requirements. The buyer has the right and obligation to reject quotations which do not comply with the RFQ.

The buyer retains the right not to accept any of the quotations. If none of the quotations comply with the RFQ according to the buyers specifications or circumstances during the tendering process have changed in a way that the buyer cannot utilize the results of the tendering process, the buyer can abstain from the procurement completely or partly.

There will be no compensation given to any provider for making and presenting its quotation or other participation into the procurement.

The buyer makes a procurement decision where procurement of each appropriate market report is shown. The decision will be informed to all providers of this procurement. Procurement decision is prepared by the buyer and Posintra Oy, who may consult the rest of the SME2GO project partners according to their own consideration. If this is done, the buyer is responsible for confidentiality of handling of the quotations, the objectivity of decision making and equal treatment of providers and it documents the persons who have participated in the decision making.   The due date for procurement decision is on week 35/2016.

Summary of the procurement schedule:

      Procurement announcement published in HILMA 30.6.2016

      Questions to buyer latest on 5.8.2016 at 15:00

      Answers to questions on www.turkusciencepark.com 8.8.2016 at 15:00

      Due date for quotations 16.8.2016 at 12:00

Procurement decision made (tentative estimate) on week 35/2016

10    DOCUMENT PUBLICITY

A provider shall clearly mark confidential documents in order for the buyer to notice which documents contain confidential information. If a provider marks its whole quotation as confidential based on business secrets, it shall however attach a public summary appendix, which gives an overall description of the services. The buyer has the authority to consider potential confidentiality of a document. Price information is not confidential information.

11    GROUNDS FOR REJECTING A QUOTATION

A quotation, which does not contain requested certificates and reports does not comply with the RFQ. Failure to submit requested documents gives grounds for rejecting a quotation. Quotations arriving later than the due date and time do not comply with the formal requirements of the RFQ and will be rejected.

12    PROCUREMENT AGREEMENT AND ITS CONDITIONS

The contracting entity makes a procurement agreement with the chosen provider(s). This agreement complies with the general contract conditions of public service procurement (JYSE 2014 – services), if not agreed otherwise.

13    SIGNATURES

Turku 30.06.2016

Niko Kyynäräinen                         Leena Tuomi

CEO                                              Program Director

Turku Science Park Oy                  Posintra Oy

 

Answers to questions regarding Request For Quotation (RFQ) “Business opportunities from non-European markets”

What does 8 different markets mean? Is the market same as a country, region or a city or a project within some of these?

In regards to this RFQ a market can be any target for SMEs to do business in, for example a country, a region, a city, or a district. What we are looking for is concrete business cases that can be presented to SMEs as an opportunity to do business. We advise you to look at markets in this case as a target for SMEs to potentially do business in and that you can, if your offer is chosen, describe in the actual business case in such way and detail that the information can be presented to SMEs as an actual, concrete opportunity for business.

Also, please note that we are looking for business cases from markets outside the European Economic Free Trade Area (EFTA) area.

What exactly is meant by a “business case”? Shall it be projects that are already ongoing and where actual business opportunities will be realized within certain time, for example 1-3 years?

The business cases should be about needs for smart city related technologies and solutions within promising markets outside the European Economic Free Trade Area (EFTA) that could be acted upon in practice within a reasonable time frame by a consortia of SME companies. So, a business case is a concrete business opportunity that can be presented to SMEs. It can be a project that is already ongoing and/or is about to be realized in the near future. SME2GO runs until October 2018 and results achieved until 2020 are relevant. So, that is the timeframe within which the projects need to be actualized.

Is there any listing done about the most relevant markets to be examined or shall we propose the markets we think are the most relevant?

You should propose the markets you think are the most relevant. Please note that we are looking for business cases from markets outside the European Economic Free Trade Area (EFTA) area.

Is it possible to suggest alternative scopes for the business cases?

As the RFQ states a quotation must give a fixed price, we cannot accept alternative scopes with different pricing.

Should the buyer wish to expand the business case from the suggested scope, is it possible to do additional work as an option?

The project will seek to act upon the business cases acquired via this RFQ. However, these future activities are separate parts of the project and, some of them, managed by different partners. Any future activities and the work and/or RFQs for those activities will be handled separately and are not a part of this RFQ.

What is the allocated sum for one business case in minimum and in maximum?

There are no minimum or maximum sums for one business case. The size of the whole RFQ is 57.000 €.

As a part of the business case/report, is it possible to suggest interested companies, who have been collected during the project or are contacts of the consultant?

Yes.

How will the reports produced in the project be utilized to achieve the goals of the project, e.g. will they be used to approach companies with the intention of growing the consortia?

The reports will be presented to SMEs by the project partners and made public via the project’s communication channels. The project will arrange events, seminars and similar activities to make sure the information about the business opportunities reaches the SMEs. Also, the project will seek to approach SMEs directly about the business opportunities.

Is it possible for the consultant to have a role in the next steps of the project, e.g. building the consortia?

The project will seek to act upon the business cases acquired via this RFQ. However, these future activities are separate parts of the project and, some of them, managed by different partners. Any future activities and the work and/or RFQs for those activities will be handled separately and are not a part of this RFQ.

In which part of the quotation should references of the company be included?

As stated in part 4.3 of the RFQ, in the section “ Expertise, market experiences and references”.