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Spencer v Harding [1869]


  • Harding issued a call for tenders, with a 7 day submission window
  • Harding accepted a tender on the first day of the window
  • Spencer submitted a better tender within the window but after a ‘winning’ tender had been accepted on the first day


  • Was a call for tenders capable of being a contractual offer to sell to the highest bidder


  • No offer, simply an invitation to treat


  • A call for tenders is an invitation to treat, and is not a contractual offer
  • The defendant did not need to sell to the highest bidder, other factors may have been involved
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