ABOUT

TEDCO is seeking services from a qualified firm (“Firm”) that can collect data, perform analyses, and generate a final report on several specific areas associated with the impact of Maryland’s current economic development strategy or actions, especially as it applies to ensuring Maryland’s long-term leadership in building an inclusive, advanced, technology-based, innovation and entrepreneurial culture across the State.

The goal of this RFP is to receive proposals from potential Firms, to evaluate those submittals, and to select the Firm best suited to provide the Services. The Firm will deliver the final written report to TEDCO by December 30, 2022.

All information included in this RFP is considered confidential and intended only for use by responders. No information included in this document, or in discussions related to TEDCO’s Firm selection efforts, may be disclosed to another party or used for any other purpose without TEDCO’s express written consent.

Minority business enterprises, as defined in Section 14-301(f) of the State Finance and Procurement Article of the Annotated Code of Maryland, are encouraged to respond to this RFP.

Key Dates

Task Completion Date
RFP Released June 24, 2022
Last Date to Accept Written Questions July 22, 2022
PROPOSAL DUE DATE August 1, 2022
Firm Selection August 31, 2022
Engagement Begins September 9, 2022
Mid-Point Progress Meeting On or Before October 28, 2022
Final Written Report Due December 30, 2022
Oral Presentations On or Before January 27, 2023

View RFP

Deadline: August 1, 2022 at 5:00 PM

Q&A

It is our understanding that stakeholder engagement has already been performed as part of the process to create TEDCO's Strategic Plan T3IME for Maryland. That being said, do you expect limited stakeholder engagement in the form of a number of roundtable discussions to take place? Despite the study being primarily quantitative, we would find value in meeting with industry leaders and gathering qualitative insights.

The TEDCO Strategic Plan, T3IME for Maryland, was developed with a specific focus on TEDCO and its role in supporting the innovation economy in Maryland over the next five to ten years.  As part of this effort, TEDCO did interview TEDCO’s stakeholders as part of its process.  The published report is all that is currently available.  Background information is available in the ‘References’ section.  Please understand that the focus of the study described in the RFP is much broader in scope – the State of Maryland’s innovation ecosystem – and not just TEDCO’s role in it.  Moreover, the results of the study described in the RFP will be used to initiate a strategic planning effort for the State with a scope of 10 – 25 years.

Various studies have already been conducted on the Maryland innovation ecosystem and associated reports are available to the public.  We expect that the selected firm will identify and analyze these reports, other relevant reports with a national scope, and other publicly-available data as an initial step in their data collection process and use this data to address the questions identified in the RFP.  While we do not necessarily expect stakeholder engagement in the form of roundtable discussions, we leave it up to the responding firm to propose the best way to address all the questions identified in the RFP.

Do you expect the study to include recommendations based on the research? If so, would these be considered as revisions to the Strategic Plan?

Several of the Study Requirements listed in Exhibit A include recommendations, so there is an expectation that recommendations based on the research will be included in the final study report.  

These recommendations will not be considered revisions to TEDCO’s current strategic plan but could influence its evolution in future years.  As stated above, the scope of the study described in the RFP is broader than TEDCO’s strategic plan.

We have been able to access the TEDCO Strategy Brief but not the detailed Strategic Plan. If you are able to share it, we would very much appreciate that.

As mentioned above, the TEDCO Strategic Plan, T3IME for Maryland, is all the documentation that is available.  The Plan contains several references that might be useful.

Along with minority business enterprises, are Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Businesses encouraged to respond to TEDCO’s RFP under the State Code of Maryland?

TEDCO is by law exempt from Division II of the State Finance & Procurement Article ("MD General Procurement Law"), so the procurement provisions of the MD Code generally do not apply to this RFA. Procurements which are subject to the MD General Procurement Law do include a preference for veteran-owned and disabled veteran-owned small businesses- see Sections 14-206 and 14-601-606 of the State Finance & Procurement Article of the MD Code. In any event, TEDCO strives to ensure full and open competition, and welcomes and encourages disabled veteran-owned small businesses to respond to this RFA, although no percentage preferences are established since, as noted, the MD General Procurement Law does not pertain to this RFA. 

Can you please confirm that the terms and conditions in Exhibit B: TEDCO Procurement Contract Standard Terms and Conditions are subject to negotiation, including section 12. Ownership of Documents, Equipment, and Materials?

TEDCO works to ensure that: (i) a level playing field is maintained for all contractors; and (i) State-required provisions are included in its procurements. As a result, the terms and conditions of its Procurement Contracts are provided to potential contractors in advance, and are generally not negotiable. Nevertheless, requests for subtle revisions are entertained to the extent necessary to accommodate the reasonable concerns of vendors who raise legitimate issues regarding terms such as those addressed in Section 12.

The RFP refers to “advanced and emerging technology industries.” Is there any way to give more examples of what these industries are or to enumerate them?

While industries like quantum computing, regenerative medicine, autonomous vehicles, and agriculture technology are a few examples of “advanced and emerging technology industries”, we expect the selected firm to speculate on the types of industries that might emerge over the next ten years – especially those that might be most relevant for Maryland. 

Is there any guidance on the length of the proposal? For example, should it be between 10-20 pages, 20-30 pages, etc.?

TEDCO has not specified any guidance on the length of the proposal.  Since it is anticipated that we will receive many proposals in response to the RFP, we hope to receive proposals that are clear and succinct.  Finalists will likely have the opportunity to provide more detail through an interview.

Will TEDCO treat submitted proposals as confidential, and if so, is there a need to mark the proposal documents with any particular language, such as “CONFIDENTIAL AND PROPRIETARY”?

TEDCO will maintain the confidentiality of proposals (or more appropriately, those portions of proposals) marked as confidential to the extent reasonably permitted by the MD Public Information Act (“PIA”), to which TEDCO is subject. TEDCO will not disclose what the PIA defines as “confidential commercial” or “confidential financial” information regarding the proposal except as called for by the PIA; however, the ultimate determination as to disclosure may be made by a court. 

Has TEDCO defined a target range for cost of services / price for this scope of work?

The RFP indicates a range of $80,000 - $120,000.  Please see Page 6 of the RFA.

Will TEDCO distribute to all interested parties all Q&A received before the deadline?  Could I be put on that list?

As specified in the RFA in Section VI on Page 6, all questions and answers will be posted to TEDCO’s website. The direct link is:
https://www.tedcomd.com/study-define-scope-and-framework-marylands-long-term-innovation-competitiveness-strategy-request 

Will TEDCO consider engaging a firm proposing to cover part of the Study Requirements or only consider firms that propose to cover the entire scope or who have already partnered as part of a consolidated proposal?

TEDCO’s desire is to execute a single contract with a firm or consortium of firms that will provide all the Services, as defined in the RFA. TEDCO will not independently engage multiple firms with each addressing a portion of the Services. 

Exhibit A details six quantitative data analytic tasks being sought, and the RFP indicates that “TEDCO anticipates that the selected Firm will primarily engage in secondary research.” However, the six tasks outlined in Exhibit A request that “recommendations” be developed as part of the final report. Please clarify what is being sought – are these recommendations to be specific programmatic actions/initiatives? Or should they be oriented toward establishing metrics/goals that should be pursued in Maryland’s quest to position the State as a top-ten, fastest-growing innovation economy by 2033 and a top ten global innovation economy by 2050?

TEDCO is asking the selected Firm to conduct the described analysis, assessment, or evaluation and then, based on same, make recommendations for the steps that Maryland will need to take to be positioned as a top-ten, fastest-growing innovation economy by 2033 and a top-ten global innovation economy by 2050.  Those recommendations should be actionable but could include target metrics to ensure the State is on track to meet its 2033 and 2050 goals.

On p.1, the RFP states that TEDCO seeks “a final report on several specific areas associated with the impact of Maryland’s current economic development strategy or actions…” Is this referring to the Excel Maryland Initiative? If so, can bidders get a copy of this strategy or an outline of key goals, so we can better assess the types of data TEDCO would like to see provided to assess progress on goals?

The referenced language does not refer to the Excel Maryland Report; rather, it is general language describing a report that will result from the Services better described in Exhibit A.  TEDCO anticipates using data obtained from the Services and the associated recommendations, i.e., the Final Written Report, to initiate a new strategic planning process and to consider the requirements for establishing a strategic investment fund - the Maryland Equitech Growth Fund.  

Is the goal to both gauge progress on the Excel Maryland Initiative, as well as to provide a data-driven assessment of where a next-10-years innovation strategy should focus?

The goal is not to gauge progress on the Excel Maryland Report/Initiative; rather, it is to deliver a report addressing the specific items listed in Exhibit A, which should include a data-driven assessment of where a 10-year innovation strategy should focus for each of the six items listed in Exhibit A.

In Exhibit A, Q2, how does TEDCO define “publicly financed advanced industry investment funds”? Are you defining this broadly as tech-based economic development investments, e.g., investment in cell and gene therapy, cybersecurity, and similar high-tech industry development initiatives, or more narrowly as state support for risk capital funds and venture development organizations?

TEDCO defines “publicly financed advanced industry investment funds” broadly as tech-based economic development investments.  This could include industry infrastructure investments, including public-private partnerships; investments in technology-based workforce and entrepreneurial development across all sectors of the population; and large venture investment funds that can transform a region’s strategic competitiveness.

Do you have NAICS definitions for the focus advanced industries (cyber, biohealth, and advanced and emerging technology industries), or do you want the consultant to develop them?

TEDCO has not identified NAICS codes for targeted advanced industries.  We expect the selected Firm to speculate on the advanced industries that will be relevant for Maryland’s competitiveness in ten years based on a trends analysis or other data.

We note the following, “An assessment of the connection between postsecondary science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education and career development for advanced industry jobs with recommendations to achieve a 10-year goal of raising STEM degrees and experiential learning opportunities for minority students equal to their overall presence in the workforce”. Does this mean you want to look at the educational requirements for advanced industry jobs, or more fully at the career pathways and what keeps minority students from pursuing those paths?

Our goal is to ensure that we have a diverse workforce meeting the needs of the advanced industries present in 10 years.  As part of this effort, we want data and recommendations to support the development of a strategy to increase STEM degrees and experiential learning for minorities.  This will include anticipating the needs of advanced industry jobs and ensuring that appropriate pathways exist for minorities so they can access the high-paying jobs requiring post-secondary STEM education and career development in these industries.  Recommendations will likely need to address the obstacles preventing minorities from earning STEM degrees and securing high-paying jobs in advanced technology industries.  

We note the following, “An analysis of community wealth in minority communities”: What kinds of wealth are you considering? Homeownership and business ownership are easily attainable. Financial wealth (retirement and investment income) is more difficult/limited.

The wealth gap between minority and non-minority communities is well documented.  TEDCO expects the selected Firm to collect data and perform an analysis of this gap in Maryland and to develop recommendations for increasing wealth generally in minority communities – specifically in home and business ownership over the course of the next 10 years, which could lead to greater financial wealth in these communities over a longer term.  

For all the data analysis requested - is there a specific geography that you are looking at state, regions, counties, communities?

The focus of the study is the State of Maryland; however, the selected Firm will need to collect data from other states for comparison as part of its analysis.

The following is a task: An examination of publicly financed advanced industry investment funds in other states, including the role and results of public funds to induce private sector growth. Should this include prior SSBCI efforts and possibly what has been approved in the most recent round?

Please see the response to Question #15.  To the extent that State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI) funds were used for such investments, or will be used for such investments, in other states, such uses, to the extent relevant, should be included.

Should we expect to evaluate TEDCO’s portfolio of investments and impacts related to these areas?

The Services do not include an evaluation of TEDCO’s portfolio of investments and their impacts, so the selected Firm should not expect to do such an evaluation.