The General Services Administration has awarded proof-of-concepts to Amazon Business, Overstock.com, and Fischer Scientific to provide agencies access to their commercial e-commerce platforms for purchases below the micro-purchase threshold of $10,000.
The test of online marketplaces was delayed by the coronavirus pandemic. It was protested at least twice after the solicitation came out in November. The White House contradicted it with a January executive order, and it remains controversial among contractors.
But the General Services Administration’s e-marketplace platform initiative finally reached the end of the beginning.
Two of the three winners — Amazon and Overstock — submitted agency level protests about the solicitation over the last six months forcing GSA to amend it at least twice.
The goal for these pilots, which could last up to three years, is to test out the use of commerce platforms that hopefully will give agencies more granular data into what GSA estimates is a $6 billion annual market through the government purchase cards.