Two construction technology companies have teamed up to streamline the preconstruction and risk management process for general contractors and subcontractors. VBX (Virtual Builders Exchange), www.virtualbx.com, San Antonio, Texas, has solidified a partnership with JBKnowledge, www.jbknowledge.com, Bryan, Texas, allowing the integration of VBX’s products for online plan distribution, construction news, and competitive bid reporting services into JBKnowledge’s construction software solutions SmartBidNet, SmartCompliance, and SmartInsight.

According to VBX CEO Michael Tollette, this partnership will provide added value for clients of both organizations. “VBX provides a service to help sub-contractors find up-to-the-minute bid opportunities, while SmartBidNet provides a state-of-the-art Web-based platform to help prime contractors manage the bid process,” he says. “We are combining these core strengths to streamline the bid process for our mutual contractor clients.”

Under the agreement, VBX will retire the organization’s current private bid management platform VBX Prime and provide access directly from the VBX Virtual Plan Room into the SmartBidNet platform for prime contractors who need to send bid invitations, prequalify sub-contractors and manage document distribution. In addition, SmartBidNet clients will be able to access VBX’s Virtual Plan Room, Virtual Leads and Virtual News products, as well as related support services directly from their dashboard.

“Contractors will be able to move between our two platforms easily to find and leverage bid opportunities quickly and efficiently,” adds Tollette.

“In partnering with Virtual Builders Exchange, we are able to integrate with premium, locally generated and managed industry data and news that our commercial building clients depend on daily,” explains James Benham, president of JBKnowledge. “SmartBidNet serves tens of thousands of general contractors and their subcontractors and we’re excited to provide them with the option of accessing VBX from within the SmartBidNet system they already know and trust.”

The integration will give clients who use both platforms the ability to import and bid projects from VBX’s Virtual Plan Room into SmartBidNet and the power to publish projects from SmartBidNet into the Virtual Plan Room when greater coverage is desired by the contractor. The integration and partnership work are currently in progress and expected to go live in 2015.

The oldest construction news service in Texas, VBX serves non-residential contractors with detailed information about competitive bidding opportunities along with online access to bid documents during the bid cycle. JBKnowledge specializes in enterprise applications and databases, electronic data interchange, strategy consulting, mobile solutions, and web development for the construction, risk management and insurance industries.

“JBKnowledge and VBX share a commitment to process innovation and client satisfaction,” declares Tollette. “So there is a lot of synergy between our two organizations that we can build on for future development.”

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