Confirmation of the award follows a challenge by one of the unsuccessful bidders

Scape has confirmed a Pick Everard, Gleeds and Aecom joint venture as the winner of its £350m consultancy framework, after a challenge against the award by a rival team led by Faithful+Gould came to nothing.

Building first revealed in late July that the JV, known as Perfect Circle, was being lined up for the four-year framework, but formal confirmation was delayed due to Scape’s choice being questioned.

Perfect Circle saw off competition from four rival bidders, including the previous holder of its consultancy framework Faithful+Gould, who this time around teamed up with Arcadis, Bilfinger GVA and Grant Thornton. The other bidders were Mace, Turner & Townsend and Norfolk County Council-owned consultant Norse Group.

Building understands the F+G-led team was the only bidder to question the award, although one source had said “there may be others”. Turner & Townsend said it didn’t question the award, while the other three declined to comment.

Scape chief executive Mark Robinson said competition for the framework was close and bid submissions were of “exceptional quality”, but the Perfect Circle JV pipped its rivals by delivering the “most economically advantageous tender, supported by an extensive local supply chain”. Perfect Circle’s supply chain will include some 150 SMEs, according to Scape.

Robinson said: “The team has not only demonstrated the combined skills and expertise to deliver the highest quality projects for the public sector, but has shown a wide-ranging commitment to sustainably improving communities, including through an extensive school work placement programme, charitable commitments and local employment opportunities.”

Commenting on the decision to delay the award, Robinson said: “We took the decision to extend the Alcatel period in order to provide the appropriate depth of feedback to all unsuccessful bidders, so that the outcome of the evaluation could be fully understood”.

The framework, known as Built Environment Consultancy Services, combines and extends two of Scape’s existing frameworks, the National Asset Management, Surveying & Design Services framework and the National Project Management and Quantity Surveying framework. F+G had held the latter framework.

Duncan Green, chairman of Perfect Circle and managing partner at Pick Everard, said: “The consolidation of consultancy services into one framework presented a unique opportunity for our respective businesses to join forces and create an offering of unrivalled added value and efficient solutions nationwide.”

Scape runs a number of frameworks and last month announced that its four-year major works framework, that is being re-procured, has increased its estimate value from £5.5bn to £7bn.

Unlike Scape’s existing major works agreement, held solely by Willmott Dixon, the latest version will be split into five lots and appoint a lead contractor to each one.

Meanwhile the other major public sector consultancy framework from the government’s buying arm, the Crown Commercial Service (CCS), has suffered more than three years of delays.

The £2.9bn flagship Project Management and Full Design Team Service framework is finally expected to launch this month after its most recent delay saw it scrap the international lots on the framework.

The Ministry of Defence instead is to procure a major international consultants framework, Building has learned.