ACCORD missed out on a £220 million highways maintenance deal by just one point under a council's scoring system.
The firm was pipped by rival Amey for the Bedfordshire County Council deal, even though Amey's bid was more expensive - reflected in the 22 point difference between the two bids on cost.
But Amey's final score of 69 was enough to beat Accord's haul of 68 points.The assessment was weighted 75 per cent on quality and 25 per cent on cost.
The contract starts this October and is worth £20 million a year for a minimum of five and a half years. A five-year extension is also planned.