Published notice: Restricted invitation to tender no. 2580 with preceding prequalification procedure
(NL - The Hague)

Provision of a managed service for the EPO Operations Control Centre (OCC)

  1. Awarding Authority:

    The European Patent Organisation (EPO) acting through the European Patent Office: Headquarters, Bob-van-Benthem-Platz 1, D-80469 Munich, Postal address: EPO, D-80298 Munich.

    The European Patent Organisation is an intergovernmental organisation set up pursuant to the European Patent Convention which entered into force in 1977. At present it has 38 Member States (Albania, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, San Marino, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and United Kingdom). The executive body of the EPO is the European Patent Office which is charged with the searching and examination of European patent applications and the granting of European patents. It employs approximately 6700 staff at EPO headquarters in Munich, a branch at The Hague/Rijswijk (NL) and sub-offices in Berlin and Vienna (the number of Member States and staff members indicated may change).

  2. Award procedure:

    Restricted invitation to tender with discretionary award of contract.

  3. Description of the contract:

    1. Purpose of the contract:

      Provision of a managed service for the EPO Operations Control Centre (OCC). The OCC encompasses monitoring and first-line support of the systems and infrastructure managed by the EPO and the maintenance and improvement of documentation and work instructions used in such activities.

      The OCC activities, e.g. Monitoring, 1st line support and Operations are executed as a 24 hrs by 7 days service. The Contractor's resources are seated in a dedicated area, “the Bridge”, located in The Hague.

    2. Division into lots:

      Not applicable.

    3. Any deposits and guarantees required:

      Not applicable.

    4. Main terms concerning payment:

      Startup and transition will be paid in two instalments. First payment at the end of the first month of the transition period and the second payment within 30 days after acceptance by the EPO of the Contractor’s fulfilment of the transition plan. In the operational phase, recurring charges will be paid monthly in arrears.

    5. Qualifications required by law:

      Not applicable. 

  4. Place and period of performance:

    1. Place at which the contract is to be performed:

      At the site of the EPO in The Hague/Rijswijk, the Netherlands.

    2. Duration of contract or time limit for delivery or completion of services/work:

      The transition phase must be performed within three months from contract signature. The operational phase will start on the Commencement Date i.e. after the EPO’s acceptance of the Contractor’s fulfilment of the transition plan. The operational phase will be for five years from the Commencement Date

  5. Variants:

    Proposals for variants, the effect of which would be to reduce significantly the rights and safeguards of the EPO, are not allowed.

  6. Pre-selection and Tender Procedure:

    1. Final date for reply to Pre-Selection Questions (see point 8 of this Published Notice) and submission of the signed Confidentiality Agreement:

      7 February 2019, 12.00 hrs (CET)

      Interested parties may show their interest in participating in this tender procedure by replying to the Pre-Selection Questions as described under point 8 (Criteria for assessing bidders' know-how, capacity and reliability to fulfil the contract) to the e-mail address listed under point 6f of this Published Notice.

      Additionally, interested parties shall download the Confidentiality Agreement available under:

      follow the instructions on the coversheet, complete and sign in two copies the resulting document and send it to the EPO in two ways: (1) scan the completed and signed Confidentiality Agreement and email this scan to the e-mail address listed under point 6f of this Published Notice by the date stated above and (2) send two signed originals to the EPO postal address listed under point 6f of this Published Notice, with dispatch to the postal or courier service at the latest by the date stated above. The EPO would expect the two originals to arrive at the EPO no later than by the third working day after the date stated above.

      As the EPO may need to clarify some answers to the Pre-Selection Questions may be needed, the EPO would appreciate if interested parties submit their reply to the Pre-Selection Questions as early as possible in order to keep the subsequent timelines.
    2. Signature of Confidentiality Agreement by the EPO:

      Based on the assessment of the above pre-selection questions, the eligible participants will receive one copy of the Confidentiality Agreement signed on behalf of the EPO.

    3. Dispatch of Procurement Documents:

      The Procurement Documents will only be made available to the eligible participants who have signed the Confidentiality Agreement. Distribution of the Procurement Documents is scheduled for mid-February 2019.

    4. Final date for receipt by the EPO of requests for clarification:

      - Provisionally scheduled for end February/beginning of March 2019. Exact date will be communicated to the eligible participants with the dispatch of the Procurement Documents.
      - Questions must be submitted by letter or E-Mail.

    5. Final date for receipt of bids/number of copies to be sent:

      - Provisionally scheduled for end of March/beginning of April 2019. Exact date will be communicated to the eligible participants with the dispatch of the Procurement Documents.

      - Bids shall be submitted in one original with price information (offer form and any supporting documents) and one copy, to be filed on data carrier, without price information as searchable PDF.

    6. Address to which the requests for clarification and bids must be sent:

      European Patent Office
      Central Procurement the Hague 4.8 (2580)
      Attn: Susanne Nielsen
      Patentlaan 2, 2288 EE Rijswijk, the Netherlands
      P.O. Box 5818, 2280 HV Rijswijk, the Netherlands


      Please submit bids by post only and not by fax or E-Mail. Bids submitted by fax or E-Mail will be excluded.

    7. Language or languages in which requests for clarification and bids must be drawn up:

      The Procurement Documents will be available in English only.

  7. Legal form of the grouping in the event of a joint bid:

    If several bidders submit a joint bid, they must be jointly and severally liable for the performance of the obligations under the contract. A declaration to this effect, duly signed by all members of the grouping and appointing a representative that is authorised to act on behalf of all members, must be submitted with the bid.

  8. Criteria for assessing bidders' know-how, capacity and reliability to fulfil the contract:

    If interested in participating in this tender, parties shall send their reply to the questions below in a table format, including requested evidence, as well as the Confidentiality Agreement to the e-mail address mentioned under point 6f of this Published Notice within the notice mentioned under point 6a:

    Pre-Selection Questions:

    Economic and Financial Capacity of the bidder:

    1. Please confirm that the statutory seat of bidder’s company (legal entity) is in a Contracting State to the European Patent Convention, as specified in Point 1 of this Published Notice. Please provide details.
    2. Please confirm that bidder is not bankrupt or being wound up, has ceased or suspended business activities, is being administered by courts or has entered into arrangements with creditors or analogous situations.
    3. Please confirm that the EPO may run a solvency check on your company via an external source (i.e. Dun & Bradstreet).
    4. Please confirm that in the last three years, bidder has an approximate average annual turnover of EUR 10 million. Please provide annual reports or similar as evidence.
    5. Please supply details and the name(s) of the representative(s) authorised to sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement on behalf of your company, together with a recent excerpt from the commercial or similar register for your company (where so needed supplemented by additional information). In case the register does not explicitly specify the authorised representative, please arrange for an appropriate power of attorney.

    Technical and Professional Capacity of the bidder:
    1. Please confirm and provide evidence that your company has provided managed services for an operations control centre comparable with the subject matter of this tender regularly and for an ongoing period of at least 7 years (can also be cumulative with multiple customers). Please give details of the provided services including details of duration, size and scope.
    2. Please confirm that your company performs formal security screening of your staff (i.e. equivalent to a ‘certificate of good behaviour’).
    3. Please confirm that all the resources you will use to deliver this service are fluent in English at the equivalent level of European Framework Level C1 or above.
    4. Please provide a minimum of three references for your provision of managed services for an operations control centre comparable to the services that are the subject matter of this tender. Please specify client organisations to which you provided services of a very similar nature, including their international dimension.

      At least one reference, which shall relate to current service provision, shall include the client’s written agreement for a reference visit by the EPO. References shall be provided using following structure:

      General information for the reference
      • Organisation name
      • Country locations
      • Business Sector
      • Agreement to a reference visit (for at least one reference)
      Information about the services
      • Detailed service description of the main services
      • Main technical details of the service solution
      • Service period
      Main contact details
      • Name
      • Function
      • Contact details
    Bidders who do not fulfil the above selection criteria and/or whose circumstances are such as seriously to call into question their financial and professional reliability (see Article 2 of the General Conditions of Tender, available under will not receive the procurement documents.
    Please observe Points 6(b) and 6(c) for the follow up to the above.

    Bidders' know-how, capacity and reliability to fulfil the contract will be assessed on basis of the information and evidence submitted in reply to the questionnaire in Annex 1 to the General Conditions of Tender and any additional questionnaire(s) included in the Procurement Documents.

  9. Period during which the bidder is bound by his bid:

    Six months following the final date for receipt of bids which will be indicated with the dispatch of the Procurement Documents.

  10.  Criteria for the award of the Agreement:

    The award criteria and their relative weightings are as follows:

    • financial aspects (40%)
    • technical aspects (60%)
  11. Other information:

    Contract award is expected to take place in the second quarter of 2019.

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