The Cabinet Office is expecting the final bids from four companies hoping to be appointed the private sector partner of a central government mutual joint venture, which will run the administration for 1.5 million public sector pensions.
My Civil service Pension (MyCSP) was announced earlier this year as the first example of a government body spun out into a mutual and partnered with a private sector company. MyCSP will administer 1.5 million civil servant pensions.
It will be owned by three groups: the 475 staff, the government and a private company that will run the service.
All final bids from the four short-listed companies are due in on Friday 4 November. Capita, Wipro, Xafinity and JLT are the final four bidders, after 14 bids were received.
The private sector partner will use its expertise to run the service, and will become a shareholder and be paid for running the contract. Like any other outsourcing contract, the private sector partner will have to compete to win the contract after five years.
When the short-listed private partners were announced in July, Francis Maude, minister for the Cabinet Office, said MyCSP is a change from the traditional choice between state control and privatisation. "It is a partnership which brings together the strengths of all the sectors and gives front-line staff clout when decisions are made."
The model makes staff stakeholders, which will improve productivity, and the private sector company will bring with it the new IT to replace the current ageing systems. "MyCSP needs a capital injection because computer systems are out of date," said a source.
Robert Morgan, director at sourcing broker Burnt, said there are a number of different financial models being put forward in the outsourcing sector at present. "The government usually drives these new models, but if it takes off in the government sector it could move into the commercial sector."