Now they they have selected them do we need to buy those to play in
Certainly not! FIDE has never required players to buy any equipment to play in FIDE tournaments. We players have never been required to buy any clocks, sets, pieces, memorabilia, etc. The only two things we have to pay for are the appropriate level of membership of our national federations or associations and the entry fees charged by the organisers.
I would feel better if they had tested the clocks to ensure they were
good quality and worth the money we pay for them instead of awarding
the seal of approval to the high bidders.
You appear to be ignorant of the FIDE Chess Clock Bidding Procedure. Not surprising given the lack of clarity of much of the FIDE site particularly after the latest munged redesign.
Here are some relevant sections of the bid document:
11. Evaluation Methodology
11.1 The evaluation methodology used by FIDE for this ITB is based on “the lowest-cost / highest-reward, substantially compliant offer”
11.2 FIDE will determine which offers are substantially compliant, and will reject noncompliant offers. Compliance refers to whether or not
the offer substantially meets the quantitatively and qualitatively
defined criteria as per the requirements and other qualification
criteria as stated in the ITB documents.
11.3 FIDE will choose the lowest-cost / highest-reward offer among the substantially compliant offers. Various factors such as the price of
the goods, the full life-cycle costs and service costs will be taken
11.4 All evaluation criteria use by FIDE are non-discriminatory.
11.5 FIDE will use three main categories of evaluation criteria: (1) formal, (2) technical and qualification, (3) financial.
11.6 Formal criteria allow checking for compliance with specific mandatory requirements in the present ITB. Offers that do not meet the
formal criteria will be rejected.
11.7 Technical and qualification criteria are derived from the requirements as well as from qualification conditions. FIDE has
developed technical and qualification criteria for evaluation
according to a weighted scoring.
11.8 Financial criteria include payments to FIDE, royalties to FIDE, and guaranteed prices for FIDE purchases.
Note that what is being bid for is primarily marketing rights:
2. General Provisions ...
2.3 FIDE shall grant the winner(s) a non-exclusive right to use the FIDE logo in conjunction with the words “FIDE Championship Clock”,
“Official FIDE Chess Clock” and/or “Chess Clock Recommended by FIDE
for National Federations” for one or more models included in the bid.
2.4 This right shall be granted for three (3) years starting October 01, 2019, and ending September 30, 2022.
2.5 The rights to use the FIDE logo and the clock designations as per Clause 2.3 above shall be provided to the winner(s) in consideration
a) lump-sum payments to be made to FIDE for each model of the chess clocks that
are included in the bid;
b) royalties to be paid to FIDE for each wholesale or retail sale of chess clocks that
are included in the bid for the whole duration of the contract;
c) an obligation to supply chess clocks to FIDE and/or national chess federations at
a fixed price or/and with discount from the standard market price (royalties as per
subcl (b) hereof do not apply for such supplies).
2.7 FIDE retains the right to freely certify other chess clocks for competition use after testing. However, no other chess clocks could be
designated as the “FIDE Championship Clock” or the “Official FIDE
Chess Clock” prior to the expiry of the three-year period, i.e.,
September 30, 2022.
2.8 FIDE shall use the model(s) designated as the “FIDE Championship Clock” in its top-level competitions (Chess Olympiad, World
Championship Match, Candidates Tournament, World Cup, Grand Prix)
during this three-year period. No more than one bidder shall be
declared a winner for this designation. Bidding Procedure – August
2.9 FIDE shall use the model(s) designated as the “Official FIDE Chess Clock” in its other official competitions included in the FIDE
Calendar (e.g., World Seniors Ch., World Team Ch., World Youth Ch.)
during this three-year period.
2.10 FIDE will make available its development fund, subject to certain criteria established solely by FIDE, to subsidize, in whole or
in part, the purchases by its member federations of the clock models
designated as the “Chess Clock Recommended by FIDE for National
In other words, clocks which win the bid must be available to member federations at subsidized prices. Other clocks which meet FIDE's technical specifications and which are consequently approved separately by FIDE may be used in ordinary level FIDE competitions.