Proton Therapy Center

A challenge facing buyers in the procurement of innovative construction and facility services is to utilize expertise without increasing project risk. In February 2014, the Amsterdam Proton Therapy Center (APTC) looked to purchase cost-efficient, and quality proton therapy equipment as a way of obtaining funding from pivotal organizations.  The problem was that the current procurement systems did not have the ability to consistently buy the latest state-of-the-art innovation in proton treatment equipment, without increasing risk due to the two-year lead time of construction, installation and rapid change in proton technology.

The Solution

The procurement agent of APTC (Jorn Verwey) was exposed to Best Value Procurement or The Best Value Approach in 2014. He saw the potential value of the system and wanted to use the system because of the following:

  1. The system is being heavily utilized in the Netherlands, and has shown to minimize risk by utilizing expertise.
  2. The BV system has the ability to compare existing technology with future innovation that was still being developed.
  3. The BV system has the ability to identify the requirement as the most state of the art equipment, without knowing what state of the art meant.
  4. The BV system has the ability to compare the ability of the vendors to provide continual innovation to upgrade their installed system.
  5. The BV system’s use of metrics to minimize the risk of misunderstanding the proposed solution and minimize the decision making of the user/procurement team and the need to trust the vendor.

The Implementation

Although he identified these characteristics in the BVA system, he still needed to convince the other departments that this system would produce results. With the help of a Best Value Expert, Wim de Vries, they were able to move forward with utilizing the BVA. Due to the government regulations BVA and PIPS process was adjusted to conform to the Most Economically and Advantageous Tender (MEAT) process. The process remained as four phases with each phase achieving the same requirements of the Best Value Approach .

The Competition

This was the first time any of the competing vendors had exposure to the BVA. In the end only three vendors proceeded to compete for the project. Of the three, two were well known companies within the industry that had already sold their equipment to multiple hospitals. Based upon their machine’s history one was perceived to be the cost leader in the industry, while the other vendor was perceived as the industry’s quality leader. The third competing vendor was a new company that had not yet built, tested or installed their complete system.

PProNova Therapy EquipmentroNova, the new competing vendor, approached Dr. Dean Kashiwagi for help in winning the award. They claimed to Dr. Kashiwagi that even though their equipment/systems had not been tested, installed or used, in two years it would be state of the art. After educating and working with the vendor’s core team for an entire day, Dr. Kashiwagi, with the assumption that everything he was told was accurate, identified this company as an innovator. Pro Nova was able to show with metrics and dominant information that they would be able to improve each component of the proton therapy equipment which would save money, increase profit, and improve performance for APTC.

The Results & Conclusion

Vendor APro NovaC
Vendor PriceLOWHIGHMED
Substantiation of Performance6106
Risk Assessment664
Value Added6104
Price Substantiation664
Total addition of documents€ 0-€ 36,000,000€ 13,700,000
Prioritization213

On May 19th 2015 Pro Nova was identified as the Best Value vendor that would move on to the next phase, clarification. The scores for each vendor are shown above. The vendor was able to score Excellent (10) on two of the four rated criteria. The results showed that The Best Value Approach can procure innovation in comparison with traditional solutions. In the BV Environment, innovative vendors can be successful when the Best Value process is used to buy innovation. BVA is the only procurement system that can consistently procure the state-of-the-art technology!

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A Procurement Method that Considers Innovation
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