In a highly contested competition to modernise the Government e-Marketplace (GeM) portal, a project of the Indian government, Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) and tech firm Intellect Design Arena are the front-runners.

According to sources who spoke with PTI, the goal of this proposal is to upgrade the digital public procurement portal's functionality and improve its standing on a worldwide scale.

GeM is a platform that enables online purchasing of products and services by central government departments and ministries. It was introduced in 2016 by the Commerce Ministry. The five-year contract for the development and maintenance of the platform, which was given to a private consortium that also consists of Intellect Design Arena and Infibeam Avenues Ltd, is set to expire this year.

Following a review of the bids, TCS and Intellect Design Arena were identified as the competitors and advanced to the technical round. Both businesses individually submitted their applications. Since Infibeam Avenues Ltd., who is currently in charge of operating the portal, was unable to submit the Capability Maturity Model Integration (CMMI) certificate, they were disqualified. In IT project tenders, this certificate is a prerequisite.

Infibeam claimed in its exchange filing that it received an email from GeM rejecting its bid for failing to meet pre-qualification requirements.

The decision of the contract is anticipated to be made public in June 2023, and the technical presentations from TCS and Intellect Design Arena are set for the upcoming week.

The GeM site enabled transactions worth Rs 2 lakh crore in the fiscal year 2022–2023, demonstrating its expanding significance in public procurement. GeM offers an extensive range of goods and services to government departments, public sector organisations, state governments, and central armed police forces. GeM boasts more than 63,000 government purchasing organisations and more than 6 crore sellers and service providers.

Despite having a wide range of capabilities, GeM is now ranked third globally, after GeBIZ from Singapore and KONEPS from South Korea. The GeM portal's future direction and position on the international scene will be decided by the contract award.

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