North East receives £100m of defence investment

Gavin williamson defence contracts RUBB


This week, Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson visited engineering and design company Rubb in Gateshead, where he spoke about the benefits of defence to the economy and industry.


Gavin Williamson visits Rubb in Gateshead

During his visit on Monday, Mr Williamson was greeted by Rubb’s staff and was given a tour of the company’s Gateshead base.

Rubb is a global leader in innovative defence structures, having worked with the military sector for many years. The relationship between Rubb and the UK Armed Forces goes back to 1979 when the RAF tasked the company to supply military buildings for the Red Arrows aerobatics display team.

Ian Hindmoor, Managing Director at Rubb Buildings Ltd, said:

“Working with the MOD is a long-standing relationship that we have nurtured over the years. We are proud to be part of an industry that helps provide equipment which supports our troops at home and in the field.”


£100m of defence investment

Mr Williamson spoke of how Rubb is just one of many businesses that have benefited from working with the Ministry of Defence, and of how the defence industry impacts the UK economy. He said:

“With this region benefiting from £100m of defence investment and in line for more business, it is playing a key role in ensuring our Armed Forces have what they need to protect our country from intensifying threats.”

The North East of England is renowned for its defence manufacturing industry; however, the largest MOD industry group expenditure in the North East currently goes to computer services, totalling £63 million.


Work with the defence sector

Defence Contracts Online publishes defence contracts not just in the North East of England but from across the UK. As the single largest customer for UK industry, the Ministry of Defence works with a wide range of suppliers.

If you would like to receive defence contract alerts, register for free with the only official source of UK MOD contract opportunities.

How could the latest Commons Defence Committee report affect the defence budget


defence contracts after new report


The latest Commons Defence Committee report, “Indispensable allies: US, NATO, and UK Defence relations” has recommended that the UK Government should increase its defence budget.

The British lawmakers have argued that if the UK sticks to NATO’s 2% of GDP defence spending recommendation and does not increase spending in the current political climate, it could lose influence with the US and other allies.

New investment could be spent on the preparation of resources for the Armed Forces and to bolster Britain’s anti-submarine warfare and cyber security against foreign threats like Russia.


What has been recommended?

The UK Government is currently meeting NATO’s 2% spending target; however, the Commons Defence Committee has suggested that the defence budget rises from 2% of GDP (£40bn) to 3% (£60bn).

The Commons Defence Committee has concluded that, without further investment, the UK could struggle to maintain its defence relationship with the US. The report states that:

“Diminished capacity reduces the UK’s usefulness to the US and our influence within NATO. The Government must not allow this to happen.”

This recommendation has come ahead of the NATO summit in Brussels next month, where the US is expected to make further demands of its European allies.


MOD Response

A spokesperson for the Ministry of Defence has responded to the reports, noting that:

“The UK maintains the biggest defence budget in Europe, we have been clear we will continue to exceed NATO’s 2% spending target.

“The Defence Secretary launched the Modernising Defence Programme to strengthen our Armed Forces in the face of intensifying threats.”


Would you like to access defence contracts?

As the MOD is currently exceeding NATO’s 2% spending recommendation, now is the perfect time for your business to look for defence contract opportunities.

By registering on Defence Contracts Online you can access the latest defence contracts (£10,000 and over) for free! Stay updated with MOD contract alerts and start finding contracts that are relevant to your business.

Register for free today

5 tips that will help you win defence contracts

There are several things your business can do to increase its chances of winning defence contracts.

Whether you are looking to become more involved in the defence community or improve the way your business is looking for defence contracts, we have listed a range of ways your business can become more efficient in finding defence opportunities. 

Read our 5 tips that will help you win defence contracts.



Webinars are an excellent way to gain insight into how your business can win defence contracts. We encourage all DCO users to attend the ‘How to find and win more defence and civil contracts’ webinar which is hosted by DCI (Defence Contracts International).

During the webinar you will learn how to fill your pipeline with hard-to-find public and private sector contracts and can ask defence contracts sourcing experts any questions that you may have about winning business with the defence sector.

Secure your place at the DCI webinar.


Industry Events

The Ministry of Defence, Defence Infrastructure Organisation and Defence Contracts Online are all official partners of the UK’s premier defence procurement event, DPRTE.

Attending events like DPRTE gives you a chance to meet defence buyers face to face and participate in training sessions that could help you to win future contract opportunities.

At the 2018 DPRTE event over 1300 delegates enjoyed 40+ training sessions across five Knowledge Transfer Zones. If you missed this event, you can register your interest now for DPRTE 2019.


BiP DPRTE 2018



Cyber Essentials

Cyber certification is now seen as the first step to success when it comes to defence tendering.

Based on DEFCON 658, official MOD policy is that defence suppliers bidding for MOD contracts that “include the transfer of MOD identifiable information” should possess Cyber Essentials certification before contract award. Suppliers are expected to show evidence of progress towards cyber certification in time for contract start date.

Once your brand is certified it will receive the relevant Cyber Essentials branding to use on collateral such as tender bids. If you would like to promote your business as cyber secure with Cyber Essentials, request your scheme summary.


MOD Guide to Defence & Security

When it comes to winning defence contracts, where better to get advice about defence procurement than from the MOD first hand? The MOD Guide to Defence & Security 2018 is now available. This publication gives defence suppliers guidance on how to engage in defence procurement and includes key contact details from across the major defence bodies.

The MOD Guide, which costs £75, includes two free exclusive Industry Reports that will help your business to grow its sales opportunities.

Order now

MOD Guide to Security and Defence 2018

Contract Alerts

One of the simplest ways you can win defence contracts is through tender alerts.

Defence Contracts Online is the official source of MOD contracts. We publish MOD contracts valued at £10,000 and over. Once you have set up your customisable search profile, we will send you daily relevant contract alerts via email.

Register for free online now and gain 24/7 access to all UK MOD published contracts.


Defence Secretary commits to working with small and medium-sized businesses

gavin williamson boosts SME investment


In December 2017, Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson unveiled his three-pronged strategy that will refresh defence’s Industrial Policy.

During his speech at the UK Defence Solutions Centre in Farnborough, Mr Williamson said that the defence sector is “industry’s biggest customer” and that the Government is “committed to exporters and small and medium-sized businesses to ensure they and our military remain the envy of the world”.

New year, new strategy

Although the MOD is making great progress with previous objectives, Gavin Williamson has revealed that plans have been enhanced. The Defence Secretary, who took the position in autumn last year, has three main focuses:


  • The first focus is to improve how defence delivers wider economic and international value, as well as national security objectives. The Government plans to introduce a pilot, which will try an innovative approach to delivering these benefits.


  • Secondly, the MOD wants to continue to build international relationships after many valuable agreements. Last year the Defence Secretary had success in Qatar signing a £6bn export deal for 24 Typhoon aircraft.


  • Lastly, the defence sector will stand by SMEs, opening up the market and making it easier for companies to do business with defence.


SMEs reach government spend

The purpose of this refresh is to adjust the industry conditions so that the market can be “internationally competitive, innovative and secure”. This will allow more small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to do business with defence.

Defence contracts promote SME interests, helping many businesses to grow and expand their employee numbers. In total, £18.7bn was spent with British companies in 2017, which supported over 121,000 jobs in the UK.

As mentioned, the Government is already succeeding in opening up the defence sector to small businesses: the MOD has increased spend with SMEs by 10% in 2017 compared with 2016, and the department aspires to place 25% of direct and indirect defence procurement with SMEs by 2020, rising from 18.1% in 2015/16.


Gavin Williamson appointed new Defence Secretary – MOD-DCO

Prime Minister Theresa May has named Gavin Williamson as the new Defence Secretary following Sir Michael Fallon’s resignation. Mr Williamson is the MP for South Staffordshire, having served the constituency since the 2010 election. Prime Minister Theresa May appointed him Chief Whip following her victory in the Conservative leadership election.

It is estimated that over 700 SMEs throughout the UK supported the build of the latest aircraft carrier, HMS Queen Elizabeth.

These opportunities are promoted both via the MOD DCO portal and the @defenceproc Twitter account. Both platforms provide a range of useful information for new and prospective suppliers.


Find International Defence Contracts

After recognising the vital role that UK businesses play within defence procurement, the Defence Secretary hinted that the defence sector will continue to expand. He said that:

“As Britan faces intensifying threats, it is crucial that our brave Armed Forces personnel have the warships, jets and missiles they need to defend the country”.

This means that now is an excellent time to sign up to Defence Contracts Online as our platform is designed to connect public sector suppliers and buyers.

If you are already a MOD DCO customer and are looking for international defence contracts, you can find out more about DCI (Defence Contracts International).


Doing business with the MOD

There are many benefits to doing business with the MOD. The shift to online portals has meant that many businesses are discovering contracts relevant to their business that they would never previously have had the chance of accessing.

The Government procures everything from military fighting vehicles to education services, which means there are opportunities for almost all types of businesses in the UK.

If you would like to learn more about doing business with the MOD, you can attend industry days that help to connect defence buyers and suppliers. Networking may also open potential for sub-contracting opportunities.

Would you like to register as a supplier? Find out how DCO can help your business.


Getting Started with Defence Procurement: SME Guide to Defence Contracts

supplies for the MOD with DCO contracts


So, you want to get started with defence procurement. Businesses of all sizes, in all sectors, no matter what they do or where they do it, can win defence contracts.

If you are the owner of a small business and want to win defence contracts with the MOD, you will find all the information you need on the DCO website.

What Are Defence Contracts?

Before you start bidding for defence contracts you must understand how the public-sector procurement world works. For a start, ‘defence contracts’ cover far more than weapons, aircraft and the like.

Defence procurement teams buy a wide variety of products and services ranging from clothing to satellite communication systems, from construction of buildings to provision of staff. This means that there is most likely scope for your business to work with the MOD in some capacity.

These defence contracts are worth bidding for if you are a small or medium-sized business. The MOD wants to work with SMEs as they have the added advantage of being able to combine innovative thinking with an agile and flexible approach, making the procurement process more transparent, simpler and faster. In addition, the MOD has made a commitment that 25% of procurement spend will be with SMEs by 2020.

How Much Is Spent On Defence Procurement?

Did you know that the MOD spend approximately £19.6 billion with third parties on a wide range of products and services? This amounts to 40-45% of total Government spend with third parties. The UK Government remains one of only five NATO member states to meet the alliance’s goal of spending 2% of GDP on defence annually.

For your business to succeed, you must understand how public procurement works and how to equip your business for success. Signing up to DCO means that you will have access to free MOD webinars that will give you a deeper insight into defence procurement. For more details about these and other benefits of DCO, download our information pack.

UK SMEs Win Business Overseas

Just because you are part of a smaller business does not mean that you cannot think big. The UK government wants to promote overseas business to SMEs. Why? Winning business overseas helps to build and sustain economic growth within the UK, something that benefits us all.

If you want to drive your small business forward, you must seek lucrative deals. These deals are available; however, you must know where to look. Using DCO you can access MOD tenders and overseas defence-related contracts.

Start Winning MOD Contracts

Understanding defence procurement is just the first step. Finding opportunities that suit the capacities of your business is often the hard part.

When you register for DCO, you will receive daily MOD contract alerts, this means that you will never miss opportunities that fit your business profile.  Small businesses can access MOD contracts that are worth £10,000 and over!


If you are interested in winning defence contracts, you can register for free today.



MOD deploys streamlined pre-qualification service

Cyber security | MOD Defence Contracts OnlineSummary: The Ministry of Defence, in association with MOD DCO, has recently deployed a change to the way in which suppliers bid for defence contracts, which should streamline the process and allow for greater efficiency and reduced bidding costs.

The new Dynamic Pre-Qualification Questionnaire (DPQQ), based on a tried and trusted online solution from the Delta eSourcing service, will allow suppliers to respond to contract opportunities using a standardised process via the MOD’s Defence Contracts Online portal.

Standardised PQQ templates allow suppliers to create, store and submit responses to MOD contract opportunities via MOD DCO quickly and easily, pre-populating fields with common data while allowing for customisation according to the contract specification.

The service allows includes built-in audit trails to allows for increased transparency, reduces admin costs around print, storage and postage, and reduces the overall bid cost by cutting down the time taken to submit your pre-qualification information.

A spokesperson for the Commands and Centres Army HQ said of the DPQQ:

“The new Dynamic PQQ system has already been used for a number of our requirements within Army HQ Commercial (C&C). Following some initial skills development and education, we are now seeing the benefits of using the new system. Certainly, we are benefiting from time saved during the early stages of tender exercises (always welcomed), as well as a reduction in admin and useful features such as in-built audit trails. With continued use, processes will become slicker and the Dynamic PQQ system will add even greater value to the tender programme.”

Suppliers are able to access and manage their DPQQ responses to MOD contract opportunities via MOD DCO. In addition, they can complete their supplier profile, allowing them to prepare and store their pre-qualification information online in readiness to respond to future contract opportunities.

Suppliers interested in working with MOD and who have not already registered on the MOD DCO Contracts Portal and completed their supplier profile should do so at

For advice on using the DPQQ please log on to to access our user guides or, for additional support, contact the Helpdesk on

To find out more about deploying your own online Pre-Qualification Questionnaire (PQQ) service via Delta eSourcing, contact

The defence market does not end with the MOD

business_7557451XSmlSummary: Alison Campbell from Defence Contracts International (DCI) looks at the defence opportunities available to businesses beyond the UK Ministry of Defence.

The UK Ministry of Defence represents a huge market opportunity for any business – not just the big main players. From computers to catering, boots to batteries and sportswear to satellites, the MOD requires the services of businesses of all shapes and sizes.

However, the defence market does not end with the MOD. If your business can sell to the MOD, just think of the opportunities available to you throughout the entire defence industry, both in the UK and worldwide. Not only does the defence industry embrace the aerospace, aviation, counter terrorism, emergency services, homeland security and humanitarian aid sectors, but you could also sell to almost any defence ministry in the world as well as the UN and NATO. The opportunities are endless.

As a supplier you are situated in a very competitive environment so don’t limit yourself, branch out within the defence industry, geographically and to non-defence buyers. It’s the organisation that can supply its products and services across the marketplace that can and will place itself one step ahead of its competitors.

And why restrict yourself to just the defence and security industry when there are countless non-defence buyers out there crying out for your business? Just think – local government, central government, health, education, social housing and the third sector could all use your products and services, not to mention the numerous research councils and similar organisations worldwide.

If you are currently selling to the UK MOD there is no reason why you could not and should not be selling to any of the sectors above, from the UK to Europe to worldwide. The world really is your oyster as a defence supplier.

But how will you ever find out about all these opportunities? Do you start trawling the internet now? Employ a whole team of staff with industry, regional and tender experience? Start working 24/7?

Or why not allow your tailored contract opportunities to find you as they are published? Why not gain access to the largest tender database in Europe? And why not let an expert team of researchers do all the work for you? Now that would be good – and what’s more there is actually a product out there that does exactly that!

Defence Contracts International (DCI) is the leading source of defence and security related contracts worldwide. As well as containing all of the above, DCI has many more features that could benefit any business. Visit DCI for defence contracts and MOD and defence procurement news.