The Competition Tribunal has, after requesting and receiving further submissions from involved parties, confirmed a consent agreement whereby corporate cleaning company Quintax Cleaning Services has admitted to collusion in 2016 with regard to a South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) tender.
The collusion was in contravention of Section 4(1)(b)(iii) of the Competition Act.
The Sassa tender was for cleaning services in the North West province and Quintax was awarded the tender.
In terms of the consent agreement entered into with the Competition Commission, Quintax will pay a fine of R250 305.27 and has agreed to implement a competition law compliance programme, besides others.
Quintax is the second cleaning company involved in this matter before the tribunal. The first was Greensweep Consortium, which had previously admitted that it had tendered collusively with Quintax in relation to the tender. It agreed to pay an administrative penalty of R40 300.59.
In January 2018, Sassa submitted a complaint to the commission alleging that Greensweep and Quintax had entered into an agreement to fix prices and tender collectively when responding to the agency's tender, which was issued for the provision of cleaning, sanitation, gardening and car wash services to Sassa in the North West.
Upon completing its investigation, the commission found that Quintax and Greensweep had agreed to tender collusively in response to the tender issued by Sassa, and it found that Quintax provided a cover price to Greensweep to submit a noncompetitive bid to Sassa.
In line with the agreement, Greensweep submitted a higher bid to enable Quintax to win the tender.