Translated by
Project

FAS recognized reasonable the complaint to mega-purchase of the office software for officials. The Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications will hold the tender again

Customers: The ministry of digital development, communication and mass communications of the Russian Federation (before the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications)

Moscow; Government and social institutions



Project date: 2019/12  - 2020/12
Project's budget: 757 million руб.
Number of licenses: 222.7 thousand.

FAS recognized the complaint to purchase reasonable

On December 4, 2019 FAS made the decision on the complaint of ALMI Partner company - AlterOffice developer – on purchase of the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications of office software for a federal executive authority. The complaint was recognized reasonable. The regulator saw violation of requirements to the description of a subject to purchase imposed by the law on a contract system in actions of the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications and directed to change the tender documentation.

One of requirements to the contractor, agrees competitive terms of reference, - to provide existence of office suites at the same time from not less than two producers included in the unified register of the Russian software. Arguments brought to "ALMI the Partner" that it enlarges formation of lot as induces the potential procurement participant to acquire the rights to software at the third party. If the procurement participant is a software maker, such requirement obliges him to address the competing producer for receiving the rights to transfer of software.

FAS recognized reasonable the complaint \"ALMI the Partner\"<i> (a photo - fas.gov.ru)</i>
FAS recognized reasonable the complaint "ALMI the Partner" (a photo - fas.gov.ru)

FAS on the commission established that to set of the set terms of reference of requirements there correspond only two products from the register: "MyOffice" and "P7 Office" which owners are New cloud technologies and "New communication technologies" respectively.

By drawing up the tender documentation in the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications relied on government decree No. 658 about the centralized purchases of the office software ordering FOIVAM to carry out works on ensuring compatibility of software of the information systems with the office software of not less than 2 different owners till 2020.

FULL FACE note that this work is assigned on FOIVY, but not to the customer of software and that on commission session representatives of department did not produce the evidence, confirmatory that rendering services in transfer of the non-exclusive rights to the office software is feasible only on condition of providing them at the same time from two producers.

Different departments were supposed to provide the softwares different sets within purchase – only four options. The commission of the regulator also compared volumes of four software packages and established that, for example, one of sets makes only 3% of total amount of the assigned rights. It assumes encumbrance of the procurement participant to purchase software licenses at other producer for accomplishment of insignificant volume of performance of the contract, solved FAS.

During consideration of the complaint of the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications already held an auction and issued the final protocol. On an auction two requests arrived, and decrease in the starting price of the contract was 2%. However names of participants according to the results of holding the auction are not specified in the published documents, and the final protocol placed on the official portal of state procurements does not open. The Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications did not specify TAdviser of the name of participants of an auction.

Anyway, FAS according to the results of consideration of the complaint "the Partner" issued to ALMI the instruction of the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications to repeal the protocol of consideration of applications for participation in an electronic auction, to bring documentation into accord with the law and to appoint new end dates of order taking and holding the auction.

In the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications in response to a request of TAdviser for the new planned date of an auction reported what all purchases are going to carry out until the end of 2019.

In "the Partner" whose product AlterOffice was excluded from the register of domestic software three days before the declaration of this tender of the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications, and, respectively, already obviously was not suitable ALMI for participation in this tender, earlier said TAdviser that filed a complaint with the purpose to win time. In the company expected to manage to appeal against the decision on an exception of their company of the register and to participate in a repeated auction. After removal of FAS of the solution of the chairman of the board "ALMI the Partner" Mikhail Lebedev refrained from forecasts whether their company will manage to appeal against the decision on an exception of the register in time.

It is remarkable that this company filed a complaint also about the purchase of office software of the Pension fund announced on November 26. However in this case FAS, according to "ALMI the Partner", recognized it on December 4 unreasonable. As of December 5 this FAS decision is not published yet.

New cloud technologies told TAdviser that do not comment on operation of the regulator, having added that the company did not participate in this purchase. It develops software, and more than 1.3 thousand partner companies are engaged in distribution of its solutions.

«
We would be glad if we "ALMI the Partner" continued to conduct similar policy and systemically appealed against purchases of foreign software for billions of rubles. These are much bigger volumes, than were specified in the centralized purchase. According to TAdviser, volume only 50 largest state procurements of Microsoft announced in Russia from January 1 to December 17, 2018 make 7.5-8.5 billion rubles, - the CEO of New cloud technologies Dmitry Komissarov noted in a conversation with TAdviser.
»

In Lad Group, being the exclusive sales associate of the P7 Office office suite, note that in the market all waited for this tender of the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications long ago. And actions "ALMI the Partner", according to the director of the business direction of corporate solutions for a public sector of Lad Alexey Bogomolov, slow down timely transition of state agencies to the domestic office software.

In a conversation with TAdviser of Mantises reminded that in 2018 the Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev suggested to impose criminal liability for failure of state procurements according to national projects. According to the representative of "Ladas", a story with complaints to the tender of the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications – just that case where this initiative would be by the way.

Suspension of the tender because of complaints FULL FACE

On November 27, 2019, some days before the appointed date of summing up an auction, the tender of the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications for purchase of 222 thousand licenses of the office software for total amount more than 757 million rubles was suspended. Department was going to purchase on a centralized basis software for 45 federal executive authorities. Purchase was suspended according to the order of FAS before consideration of the complaints which arrived practically at the same time at once from several companies by it. In them specific provisions of the technical requirements which are contained in procurement documentation are challenged and also respect of the principles of fair competition by department is called into question.

The excluded, but not giving up player

According to the register of complaints on the official portal of state procurements, in total on this tender 11 complaints FULL FACE from 6 companies[1] arrived]. On November first, 26, it was made by ALMI Partner company - developer of the AlterOffice office suite. Consideration of its complaint will take place on December 2.

Its product three days before the declaration of the tender of the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications was excluded from the register of the domestic software according to the results of a meeting of Expert advice according to the software at the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications. Experts considered that AlterOffice is not the most current version of freely extended LibreOffice software which is minimum customized by the copy. Inclusion of this software in the register in the spring of 2019 happened because of insufficiently qualitatively carried out expertize, believe carrying out this, the last, examination.

In "ALMI the Partner" consider that the exception of their product of the register occurred on unreasonable arguments and it is not casual – in anticipation of the tender. After AlterOffice exception in it there were two products conforming to requirements of the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications - "MyOffice" and "P7 Office". In the register there is a Zircon office suite, but it does not conform to the additional requirements to the office software set by the order of the government and necessary for participation in state procurements yet.

Because of the arrived complaints FAS disposed to suspend mega-purchase of the office software of the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications\' \'(a photo - RIA Novosti, Mikhail Fomichev)
Because of the arrived complaints FAS disposed to suspend mega-purchase of the office software of the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications' '(a photo - RIA Novosti, Mikhail Fomichev)

"ALMI the Partner" is going to try to obtain return of the product to the register and also participation in purchase of the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications. "the partner" Mikhail Lebedev explained to the chairman of the board with ALMI TAdviser that suspension of the tender gives to the company extra time to manage to address FAS for protest of the decision on AlterOffice exception of the register and in a result to have an opportunity to take part fully in purchase.

«
For this purpose we also develop our product – to provide with the office software federal executive authorities, - Lebedev in a conversation with TAdviser noted.
»

He added that in addition to FAS their company also plans the appeal to prosecutor's office because of AlterOffice exception of the register.

Mikhail Lebedev told TAdviser that since May, 2019 AlterOffice successfully passed in total 6 independent technical expertizes in Scientific Research Institute Voskhod. They, as well as the last examination at expert advice, were carried out as a result of appeals of competitors to the ministry, he claims. It is known, for example, of the address concerning AlterOffice to department from New cloud technologies - the developer of the MyOffice office suite.

On all these examinations in Scientific Research Institute Voskhod the positive conclusions were issued. Two more examinations, according to Lebedev, were carried out by Rospatent which did not detect mismatch patent and to copyright too.

Mikhail Lebedev with reference to lawyers of the company also told TAdviser that four legal persons from all from whom complaints FULL FACE to the tender of the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications arrived, are dealers "ALMI the Partner". He on memory on the run found it difficult to provide names. In total the company has more than 200 dealers across Russia, Lebedev added.

Essence of the complaint of founders of AlterOffice

"ALMI the Partner" adduces in the complaint arguments for benefit of the fact that requirements of procurement documentation infringe at its rights as the potential procurement participant. In defiance of requirements of law No. 44-FZ the customer set the requirements limiting number of procurement participants and not relating to characteristics of a subject to purchase, are sure of the company. According to terms of reference, it is required to deliver 4 office suites for a federal executive authority.

At the same time the duty to provide corresponding to all set software parameters not less than two producers is assigned to the supplier. In "ALMI the Partner" consider that this requirement does not belong to functional, technical or quality characteristics softwares and also does not characterize the qualification level of the supplier of goods. It involves restriction of number of procurement participants, AlterOffice developers are convinced.

«
In the case under consideration holding a uniform auction to 4 office suites with establishment of the requirement about delivery of software not less than two producers, according to us, is directed to creation of primary conditions to one of procurement participants who has an arrangement with the competing producer on delivery of software of its production, said in the complaint "ALMI the Partner".
»

At the same time if are presented at the market and only two software meeting the requirements to subject to purchase can be delivered, the customer the above-stated requirement of tender documentation will create a condition of "phantom competition" for the purpose of ensuring participation of, at least, two participants of an auction who will honesty not compete and decrease at the contract price, authors of the complaint add.

«
Taking into account the complaints which arrived FULL FACE purchase is suspended. The Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications of the Russian Federation does not agree with the provided complaints and on consideration FULL FACE of Russia will uphold earlier defined course towards development of competitive market of the domestic software, - told TAdviser in the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications concerning the arrived complaints.
»

It is necessary to tell what at New cloud technologies company is officially announced five authorized distributors (Axoft, Merlion, Mont, 1C, Treolan). The Merlion company in November became also distributor and "P7 of Office" - the second of two possible the office suite which should be purchased within mega-purchase of the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications. Thus, at least, partner resellers of Merlion which there is not one ten, on the complete bases can come on tender of the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications.

"Nizhny Novgorod support group"

In addition to "ALMI the Partner", according to the register of complaints, five more companies addressed FAS on November 26-27. "ALMI the partner" is based in Nizhny Novgorod, and the most part of other complainants, according to the USRLE, also has communications with Nizhny Novgorod. These are Chestny Soft LLC companies, Levant LLC, Vesta LLC, Sistema-R LLC and Rigel LLC.

Each of these companies submitted two complaints at once. Thus, together with "ALMI the partner" in total is 11 complaints. What is remarkable, complaints of all these five companies look extremely similar.

1. Chestny Soft LLC (TIN 1327035204). Its complaints were the first after the complaint "ALMI the Partner". At the same time the company was registered quite recently - on October 28, 2019 in Saransk. In the first complaint from this company the argument is adduced that only one software product – My Office conforms to requirements of terms of reference in the tender documentation. The second complaint concerns excessive, in terminology of authors of the text – "impressive", the amount of providing the bid and performance of the contract. The phrase "Also the amount of providing on this auction is impressive …" is present at the corresponding complaints and four other companies.

2. Levant LLC (TIN 6686115003). The company from Yekaterinburg, is created in April, 2019. As well as all other participants of "support group", this company filed FULL FACE at once too two complaints which it is informative, and tekstualno look as clones of complaints of "Fair software", up to turnovers about "the impressive amount of providing".

3. Vesta LLC (TIN 5257178362). The company from Nizhny Novgorod, i.e., from there, from where and "ALMI the Partner". Exists since 2017. The average number of employees in 2018 – 1 person. In July, 2019 in the company the only owner was replaced: Arapova Elena Valentinovna became him and in combination the director. According to the USRLE, she is the director and the founder of one more company – Almor LLC, registered in Saransk in the adjoining house with where Chestny Soft LLC is registered. And complaints Vesta look clones of complaints of Chestny Soft and Levant.

4. Sistema-R LLC (TIN 7734397289). Also filed FULL FACE two complaints "cloned" from complaints of Fair Software, Levant and Vesta. The legal address of the company is in Moscow, however, in both complaints as the return address the Nizhny Novgorod post office box is specified.

5. Rigel LLC (TIN 5257178108). Also filed 2 complaints FULL FACE – clones of complaints of the previous four complainants. At the same time the company is in process of liquidation since September of the 2019th and in the nearest future should be excluded from the USRLE as the invalid organization. It does not occur not for the first time. Registered in December, 2017, Rigel LLC in May of the 2018th received the status "in the course of liquidation" which was changed on "acting" in August, 2018, the held-on exactly a year, till September of the 2019th. During this time concerning Rigel were open and complete because of impossibility to set location of the debtor of 3 enforcement proceedings. And a legal address at Rigel just the same, as well as Vesta companies.

Publication of purchase

On November 14, 2019 the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications of the Russian Federation announced a tender on delivery of the Russian office software for federal executive authorities. Total amount of purchase is 757 million rubles[2].

The Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications buys the Russian office software for 45 federal agencies
The Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications buys the Russian office software for 45 federal agencies

The centralized delivery of office suites of software will cover 45 federal agencies. In total over 222.7 thousand products with validity period should be delivered 1 year. At the same time for 181.1 thousand software packages action of the license should begin within 10 days with signature date of the deed of conveyance, for other 41.6 thousand licenses – since January 1, 2020.

Most of all office products it is required to the Federal Tax Service – nearly 87 thousand. Large deliveries are also planned in Federal Treasury (more than 30 thousand), in the Federal Customs Service (29 thousand), in Rosstat (18.5 thousand) and Rosreestr (15.5 thousand).

According to documentation of the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications, 4 types of office suites are provided. All of them should turn on without fail the text and tabular editor, the editor of the presentations and software of a file manager. In addition the email application, an organizer, a preview player and communication software can be a part of some packets.

The customer does not specify the specific name of the purchased software. As of November, 2019 in the register of domestic software there are several office suites. In particular, it is products"MyOffice", "P7 Office", AlterOffice and "Zircon office".

The supplier of licenses will be selected on December 3.

Along with purchase of the Russian office software of the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications holds an auction on delivery of antivirus tools. She assumes transfer to federal authorities over 334 thousand licenses.

According to order of the Government of the Russian Federation No. 658 of June 8, 2018, on the Ministry of digital development, communication and mass communications powers are assigned to purchase of the office software and cybersecurity solutions for federal executive authorities, management of which is performed by the Government of the Russian Federation.

Let's remind that in 2018 for federal executive authorities the diagram of transition to the cloud system of conducting budget accounting and payroll was also set. In total centralization of accounting will affect 50 FOIVOV. On May 29, 2019, speaking at the TAdviser SummIT conference, [1] the deputy manager of Federal Treasury Alexander Albychev told about the first results of this project.

Notes