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Canadian companies can participate in consortia bidding on U.S. Department of Defense contracts under Other Transaction Authority

July 18, 2019

Each year, the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) purchases billions of dollars worth of products and technologies. In some instances, particularly where innovative technologies and products are required, a consortium of industry and academic innovators in a similar technology area teams up to deliver commercial solutions that meet U.S. DoD requirements. These consortia can sometimes leverage “Other Transaction Authority (OTA),” a flexible and agile option that can help U.S. DoD contracting officers streamline and speed up the acquisition process.  In fact, OTA allows DoD to contract certain prototype, research and development projects to OT consortia and non-traditional defense contractors outside of the typical U.S. contracting regulations (i.e., Federal Acquisition Regulations).

Unfortunately, some consortia have excluded Canadian companies from joining – and thus from leveraging OT opportunities – as they believed only U.S. companies were eligible for membership. However, this position is inconsistent with longstanding agreements between Canada and the United States, including the Defense Production Sharing Agreement (DPSA), and with stated U.S. DoD policy, which notes that Canadian companies are an integral part of the U.S. “National Technology and Industrial Base” (NTIB) and that specifically urges the inclusion of NTIB members in OT consortia.

CCC worked closely with Defense Pricing and Contracting (DPC) senior officials in the U.S. DoD’s Office of the Secretary of Defense to ensure Canadian companies can be considered for OT consortia membership and thus OTA contracting opportunities.

Canadian companies can learn more about OTA contracting by accessing the U.S. DoD OT Guide.  Further, when dealing with an OT consortium, Canadian companies should provide consortium officials with a copy of the March 2019 memo from the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense that provides “Clarifications on the Other Transactions Guide from November 2018 and non-traditional defense contractors supplies and services”.  This memo explains that Canadian companies can be considered for OT consortium opportunities.

Helping Canadian companies sell to the US Government

Canadian companies offering innovative solutions are encouraged to view and compete for U.S. DoD contracts – or any other federal contracting opportunities.  In fact, the U.S. Government advertises all of these opportunities on the FedBizOpps.gov website.  Canadian companies are should check the site regularly for opportunities they may be qualified to bid on.  Get started by watching the General Overview & Searching for Opportunities video for an introduction to the site for vendors.

CCC helps Canadian companies access U.S. DoD contracts and other federal government procurement opportunities.  We encourage Canadian companies to contact CCC for more information on how CCC can help you grow your business with the U.S. DoD and help you navigate the U.S. DoD procurement process.

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