Industry responds to GSA e-Commerce portal

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Eric Crusius, partner at Holland & Knight, discusses the General Services Administration’s e-Commerce plan, and how industry would like a fair platform for selling to the government.


The General Services Administration has completed its implementation plan for their long-awaited e-Commerce portal. The agency wants flexibility in designing the platform, but what does that mean for the industry members who will populate it?

“There’s different models when companies sell things online. The model where the company only sells its own products on its own website. There’s a model like Amazon, where they sell their own products and other people’s products. And there’s a model where a company gives the software to a third party and they run the website using that software. GSA is not sure which model they want to use right now,” said Eric Crusius, partner at Holland & Knight. “They want to have that flexibility as they move forward and take more information from the stakeholders on what to do.”

 

Crusius said that the one thing industry wants above all else is fair competition.

“They don’t want to be put at a disadvantage on this portal. If you have a portal that’s just like Amazon for instance, any company can come in. If you have contractors who have spent millions of dollars building up compliance systems, they will be at a disadvantage, because their products will be more money… they want some kind of even playing field.”