InfraCivilCon2023: Following Equans' acquisition, Bougyues will withdraw one bid from the competition for the £300M HS2 contract.

 Due to competition concerns brought on by its impending merger with Equans, Bouygues will withdraw one of its bids for the £300M HS2 Phase One overhead catenary works.

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has expressed worry that the merged business will have two bids in the running for the contract if Bouygues successfully completes its £6 billion acquisition of the French contractor.

One of the four shortlisted bidders is Bouygues, and another is partially controlled by Equans. Colas Rail, owned by Bouygues, Rapide JV, a partnership between Equans-controlled SPL Powerlines UK/INEO and Keltbray-Balfour Beatty, and China Railway Electrification Engineering Group Co. are the four bidders that are presently in the running.

The plans might thus be detrimental to Keltbray Rail, which is vying for business with Equans-owned SPL Powerlines UK/INEO.

Bouygues has asked the CMA to hire French company Ingerop, an impartial engineering firm, to assess its two offers. According to its review technique, HS2 Ltd will move forward with the bid that is the most profitable for it, rejecting the other one.

The proposed undertakings "provide as complete a response to these concerns as is reasonable and possible," the CMA stated, adding that they "are, in this situation, appropriate to correct, alleviate, or prevent the competition concerns identified."

Prior to making a decision, the CMA publicised Bouygues' offer for market consultation.

The winner of the package will be in charge of the overhead systems' additional design phases as well as their production, supply, installation, testing, and commissioning.

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