Governments are the single largest buyers in the world. However, public procurement, the process by which governments acquire goods and services, is a fragmented and highly manual $16 trillion dollar global industry that over 400 million small businesses cannot access.
On one hand, government buyers find it difficult to conduct small purchases — simple, discretionary transactions with credit cards and direct purchases, that take significant time, research, training and documentation. On the other hand, small businesses often don’t have the capacity or experience to win big contracts, and their lack of digital infrastructure and low visibility makes it hard for governments to discover and buy from them.
Throughout the years, governments have put a lot of resources into supplier diversity and vendor outreach programs to increase equity and inclusion in public procurement. Still, these efforts haven’t yielded significant results. Government buyers end up swiping their credit cards at big-box retailers and receiving incomplete quotes via email or fax.
Bridging this digital gap and enabling government agencies to make convenient and compliant purchases under their bidding thresholds at the speed of e-commerce, while reaching their socioeconomic goals, is Glass’ objective.