Assessing the incumbent’s position to win

  • Because the incumbent has such a deep understanding of the customer and the work they are the odds on favorite to win the re-compete. However, you may be able to find indicators that they are vulnerable:
    • Lack of spending: For example:
      • If the contract is for $1 million
      • And they are more than halfway into the life of the contract
      • And only 20% of the money has been spent
      • Then this can indicate that the government is unhappy with the incumbent’s performance
    • Lost 8a status: The 8a program only lasts for nine years so if the contract is 8a set aside then you can check when the incumbent received their 8a and see if they will still be in their nine year window when the re-compete is awarded.
      • To find a company’s 8a expiration date: look the company up in
    • Sizing out: If the contract is set-aside for small businesses then the company may not be small anymore. You can manually assess whether a company is still small by analyzing their revenue over the last three years
    • Was the contract terminated:
      • See if the government terminated the contract by looking it up in
      • Look at the transaction descriptions in USAspending to see if there are any indicators of negative outcomes

How well positioned is the incumbent at this customer

  1. Download the USAspending data for this company: Search for the incumbent’s CAGE code in USAspending and download the data on their awards
  2. See if there are performance indicators: Look at how many other contracts they have at this customer to get a sense for their customer connection:
    1. Was this a one off win that they probably don’t care too much about?
    2. Was this a large contract for the incumbent (they probably care a lot) or a small contract (they might care less)
    3. Has their revenue at this customer grown (they are a rising star) or is their revenue there falling (they might be getting pushed out of this customer)

Other resources (Individual contract checks)

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FOIA request template

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