Liberal Democrat Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary Steve Webb says Tata Consultancy Services has the Personal Accounts Delivery Authority “over a barrel” now that it is the only administration firm left in the bidding process.
On Monday, Great-West Retirement Services became the third bidder to pull out of the running for the contract to administer personal accounts, leaving just Tata still in the bidding process.
In October, Money Marketing revealed that Danish admin provider Arbejdsmarkedet Tillaegspension (ATP) had withdrawn from the contract bidding and Logica UK pulled out in November.
Speaking to Money Marketing. Webb says: “I think it is a very worrying development. The first question is what happens if Tata now pulls out? If the others have decided it is not going to be lucrative enough, this lot could do the same, which could completely stymie the whole thing. On the other hand, Tata now know this, so it means they have got Pada over a barrel. It further und- ermines the whole policy.”
Pada chief executive Tim Jones say: “The competitive dialogue process has been designed to lead us to a successful conclusion and we are close to achieving that.
“We expect Tata to submit strong final proposals, but we obviously need to evaluate these against our evaluation criteria, including cost.
“Signing a contract with TCS is not a foregone conclusion but we have high expectations that an agreement can be reached. Our priority is to get value for money for personal accounts scheme members and to agree a solution that will meet our requirements and we are confident we can do that.”