Companies shortlisted for Greater Manchester contracts

EXCLUSIVE: The Greater Manchester Combined Authority is on track to award its new waste management contracts in early 2019, having narrowed down the bidding list.

A waste and resource management services contract for the authority area has been split up into three lots: waste and resource management services; household waste recycling centre (HWRC) management services; and, biowaste management services.

Three companies have been shortlisted for each lot of the contract. For the waste management contract Suez, Veolia, and Viridor have been invited to continue in the procurement process. For the HWRC contract FCC, Suez and Veolia have been invited to continue. And, Biffa, Biowise and Viridor are the three firms contenting the bio-waste work.

PFI contract

Waste management services were previously provided by Viridor Laing under a PFI contract with the Greater Manchester Waste Disposal Authority (GMWDA). This contract was terminated last year and since then, GMWDA has been abolished and the powers for waste disposal transferred to the Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) (see story).

GMCA decided to break the services contract up into three lots based on waste stream and facilities. The decision to break up the contract followed a review carried out by GMCA, which found that a single integrated contract was “unlikely to generate a competitive market response owing to the limited number of organisations that would be able to bid”.

Instead, the new arrangement was chosen to “maximise competition” and attract specialist service providers.


The contract is due to be awarded in January 2019, with a start date of 1 April 2019.

GMCA holds statutory waste disposal powers for ten councils in Manchester

GMCA has now entered a round of feedback and dialogue sessions across technical, financial and legal aspects of the procurement and this concludes later this month. Final tenders are due for return in November 2018.

When contacted by, a spokesperson for GMCA said there is no intention of reducing the shortlisted companies at this stage of the procurement. “The bidders will be submitting their final tender documents towards the end of this year and we are hoping to announce the preferred bidder/s in January/February 2019.”


The scope of the procurement includes operation of five residual waste sites, twenty household waste recycling centres, eight transfer loading stations, the Bolton thermal recovery facility, the materials recovery facility, a number of bio waste facilities, the obligation to produce refuse derived fuel and associated rail transport and supply to the Runcorn Thermal Power Station.

The Greater Manchester Waste Disposal Authority – now abolished – previously let and managed a 25 year PFI contract entered into in April 2009. The PFI contract ceased on 29th September 2017 via a negotiated settlement with the contract providers (Viridor and Laing) and the financing Banks (see story). The PFI contract was formally wound up on 8th March 2018.

Operations are currently being delivered via a short term contract with the existing operator, Viridor Waste (Greater Manchester) Ltd, while GMCA procures the future operating contracts.


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