UK Awards New GBP 3.2m Framework Contract for Language Services

The public sector language procurement machine keeps churning in the UK, issuing framework contracts large and small. After the UK announced back in June that the massive ESPO contract would be put back out for tender, comes a new language services contract worth GBP 3.2m (USD 3.8m), which has just been awarded to nine language service providers (LSPs).

The contract is divided into six lots: one for face-to-face interpreting, two for British sign language interpreting, and three for translation. The contract takes the form of a multi-vendor framework agreement, which offers no guarantees as to the amount of business each supplier will eventually be awarded.

The contracting authority is the Milton Keynes Council in Buckinghamshire, UK, according to the award notice, published on July 29, 2019. Clients include local government and health organizations across Buckinghamshire and the nearby counties of Northamptonshire and Cambridgeshire.

The purpose of the framework contract is to “support the delivery of MK Language Service assignments.” MK Language Service, originally created as the Milton Keynes Council’s internal language service division to support the local foreign language-speaking population, has since expanded to serve both public sector and corporate customers through its network of interpreters in the Eastern Region.

In the award notice, Milton Keynes Council stated it received a total of 26 tenders. Nine companies were selected for face-to-face interpreting; 10 for British sign language; one for document translation; and five for the combination services lot, a combined lot for translation services, British Sign Language, and face-to-face interpreting.

The nine LSPs selected to provide face-to-face interpretation were AA Global Language Services, Absolute Interpreting and Translations, Beacon Languages, Cintra Language Services Group, Herts Interpreting and Translation Service, K International, Premium Linguistic Services, Silent Sounds Communications, and Word Language Services.

Premium Linguistic services was the sole provider awarded the lot for document translation. AA Global Language Services, Absolute Interpreting and Translations, K International, Premium Linguistic Services, and Silent Sounds were also awarded the combination services lot.

Although no start date for the contract was listed, the framework agreement will run for a duration of 48 months with no option for renewal.

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