Grundman cited in Defense News, “Small Companies Navigate Contract-Bundling Challenges”

2 April 2012 • 0 Comments

However, the effects of bundling are not one-sided, said Steve Grundman, a fellow at the Atlantic Council. “Bundling is the proverbial two-edged sword for small business,” he said. “On the one edge is the concern that the scope and scale of a bundled contract is generally harder for a generally narrow-scope firm to be able to address by itself. But the other edge to the sword is that, at least in principle, there’s no reason a small business cannot be a prime contractor for a larger-scale, broader-scope project, but they have to be good at task organizing a team.” Vocal concerns about bundling are not new, Grundman said. . . . While it may provide some difficulties for small companies, exclusive arrangements can be helpful to the government in differentiating teams, Grundman said. “It would be typical for a small business to try to partner with everybody who is competing, so that they can keep their people in place regardless of who wins,” he said. “That is exactly that kind of conduct in the marketplace that [Deputy Defense Secretary] Ash Carter is trying to put an end to. That’s a little bit too comfortable.” . . . Grundman pointed to Carter’s Better Buying Power initiative, which promotes increased engagement with small businesses and increases competition, as playing a key role in current acquisition policy. “If you’re good enough, if you’re valuable enough as a partner, you have the negotiating leverage to partner with more than one team,” he said. “But if you’re not differentiating enough relative to the offering, then you’re likely to be left with having to commit to one team or another. That all feels to me like normal business.”


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *