The marketing manager of Diginexx, Ms Vivian Yuan, confirmed to TNP that it did not know of NParks' tender.

She claimed: "NParks is aware that Diginexx is the authorised distributor. Most local bike companies do not follow Gebiz tenders as one would not expect government agencies to want to buy high-end bicycles for group use.

"A folding bike with 16-inch wheels is not a common commodity like tissue paper and pens.

"It would be fair to assume that (NParks') procurement or purchasing (departments) would want to seek out the various players in the industry to ask them to consider bidding for their bulk purchase tenders, thus doing their due diligence."

Ms Yuan said Diginexx would have also offered a five-year warranty on its frame, and a two-year warranty on its parts for the bicycles.

She also suggested that the stat board could have found cheaper alternatives to the Brompton or approached Diginexx for a quotation to save public money.

Mr Ong agreed with Diginexx's stand.

He told TNP that the cycling community was largely unaware of the tender's existence.

He said: "If we were aware, there would surely have been more bids."

Mr Ong suggested that NParks should consider informing major players in the business about future tenders, or at least putting up posts online informing bicycle companies about the tenders.

"That way, NParks can be transparent and still be fair to bidders."

When contacted, BikeHop managing director Lawrence Lim, 40, declined to comment.

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