IDB’s Build the Americas infra tender opportunity tool makes strong debut

Bnamericas Published: Friday, July 09, 2021

An IDB app to boost competition and transparency in Latin American tendering processes has been well received by companies in the infrastructure development ecosystem that have started using it, BNamericas was told.

Launched in March, smartphone app Build the Americas provides early access to information on upcoming IDB-financed procurements and a digital lobby where developers and local goods and services suppliers can network.

IDB generates around 500 bids a year involving more than US$3bn in infrastructure contracts. A common challenge facing international infrastructure developers eyeing Latin America is identifying, and partnering with, suitable local companies – which can help give their bids a competitive edge.  

The tool – geared to the energy, transport and water and waste sectors – was developed by ConnectAmericas, the 500,000 user-strong IDB platform created to help regional SMEs gain access to international markets.

“The feedback from companies that have entered the [Build the Americas] app has been very positive,” IDB senior specialist in trade and investment Francisco Estrázulas told BNamericas. 

He said: “The platform hasn’t reached its full potential because we haven’t yet started a campaign to get the word fully out there.”

A key requirement of potential bidders for infrastructure contracts – and of potential suppliers – is being informed of tendering processes far in advance of their launch. 

Estrázulas said IDB was working with construction chambers in the region to evangelize the free-of-charge platform and that a goal over the coming years was to add functions and features based on user feedback. 

Build the Americas follows the launch of AI-powered service Project Tracker by Latin American business intelligence platform BNamericas. Project Tracker – part of a suite of business support tools – generates sales leads in real time for providers of products and services seeking opportunities across Latin America’s hydrocarbons, IT, electric power, mining, infrastructure and water and waste sectors.    

Investment in infrastructure – which creates jobs along supply chains – is seen as vital to regional recovery efforts following the COVID-19 shock. 

An aim of Build the Americas and Project Tracker is connecting stakeholders, to boost opportunities for suppliers and to help get projects built efficiently – all in line with efforts to support the region’s economic development.

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