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  • Question

    Please advise as to whether this may be considered a contractor conflict of interest that impedes competition and please provide guidance that I may utilize in this determination.


    Answer

    After the additional information you provided via separate e-mail, it's apparent that there are other circumstances within your organization where the two companies are in competition for the same order. It's important to point out that this is a matter for your agency's legal counsel to assess, so it is imperative that you bring it to their attention. That being said, the definition of organizational conflict of interest at FAR Part 2 includes situations where "...a person has an unfair competitive advantage."

    The question in your situation comes down to whether the President of Offeror A has an unfair competitive advantage because he/she may be competing against him/herself as an employee of Offeror B (and vice versa). I am not convinced that this necessarily represents a meaningful conflict of interest situation. The standard for competing BPA orders is to obtain at least three independent offers. If at least four companies are solicited for each order, then even if two of them (Offeror A and Offeror B) may "in combination" represent a potential conflict of interest in regards to pricing and may in effect constitute only one offer between them, then there will still be at least three "independent" offers (Offer A and B being considered one combined offer) in response to each RFQ. This answer reflects primarily a business perspective, so please check with your agency’s legal counsel for their legal perspective.

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