Reverse auctions: 5 case studies

A selection of case studies about reverse auction to share experience.

Reverse Auction on a vehicule fleet
Eutilia © 2002
When two of the UK’s largest utility companies , United Utilities and ScottishPower, were seeking suppliers to provide them with a mix of cars, vans and trucks for their vehicle fleets, they issued a tender document with a value of 250 million Euros over three years and decided to proceed with a reverse auction.

Reverse Auction e-Procurement: A Supplier Viewpoint
Andrew Stein & Paul Hawking, © 2002
The paper presents the case of the reverse auction from the viewpoint of one supplier and looks to present the insight of a losing bidder. Small and large businesses, global organisations, Australian and multi-national business, greed, fear and avarice are all themes explored in the paper giving the ?real business? perspective to a topic that often is simplified into ?techno-business? jargon.

Reverse auction | eProcurement by Brazil’s Federal Government
COMPRASNET Success/Failure Case Study No.12 by Marcos Ozorio de Almeida (
COMPRASNET was introduced to automate the procurement process. The aim of automation was to make the procurement process uniform without centralising the buying process of the Federal organisations. It was also intended to reduce procurement costs and give more transparency to the process. Other aims were to increase the number of government suppliers; to reduce participation costs for these suppliers; and to increase competition among suppliers, which should also bring about costs reductions and better quality of goods and services acquired.

OGC Reverse auction | Case study for Office supplies
eAuction done in July 2005 – Target audience: local authorities – by Kevin Grant, London Borough of Newham
This case study concerns the actions and results of a tendered framework contract held for the Supply and delivery of 4 different commodities (lots). The pricing element of these commodities was determined via an electronic reverse auction. 18% savings on average.

OGC Reverse auctions | Results in 2005 and legal position
OGC 2005
Central government savings in 03/04 GBP 3 million
Central government savings in 04/05 so far – GBP 5 million
Average cost of running an eAuction ? under GBP 10k

Average savings from an eAuction GBP 200k
Disappointing rate of adoption despite proven benefits

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