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6 August 2011
| Angeline Albert
The UK government has awarded two central purchasing deals that are expected
to save it £18 million a year on office supplies.
supplies contracts, agreed for all government departments, have been given to Banner Business Services,
owned by Office2Office and XMA Ltd.
The deals will be managed by the HM Revenue &Customs (HMRC)
on behalf of Government Procurement. The HMRC was selected to lead on managing the centralised buying agreements
for this category because of its purchasing expertise in the area.
Banner Business Services will provide office
stationery, office paper, janitorial goods and small office machines. XMA will
provide electronic office consumable goods - such as
deals have reduced the number of catalogue items available to departments from
15,000 to 3,500. As well as Whitehall departments, a number of wider
public sector organisations have also decided to take
up use of the agreements.
Office minister Francis Maude said: “These contracts will bring an end to the ludicrous practice of one
department buying office equipment at one price while another buys the same
items at a totally different price – all central government departments and
quite a few public authorities will buy through this contract. I know it’s not
glamorous to talk about savings made by procuring pens and paper, but
centralising our procurement in areas like this will save the government, and
therefore taxpayers, millions of pounds.”
Collington, the government’s chief procurement officer, said: “These contracts are the first of many we
will source and manage of behalf of departments, where government’s buying
power is being better leveraged. These results demonstrate the procurement
reform strategy is delivering as planned.”