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Constructors Supply Co. v. Bostrom Sheet Metal Works, Inc.

Minnesota Supreme Court
291 Minn. 113 (1971)


Facts

The University of Minnesota requested prime-contractor bids for new construction. Constructors Supply Company (CSC) (defendant) contacted potential bidders and offered to do the ventilation subcontracting for $372,000, which as the lowest price anyone offered, made CSC’s offer the winning subcontracting bid. Bostrom Sheet Metal Works, Inc. (plaintiff) factored CSC’s offer into its own bid for the prime contract. Afterward, CSC discovered that it had miscalculated and underestimated what the ventilation work would cost. CSC withdrew its bid and submitted another bid for $421,000. Bostrum won the general contract but ignored CSC’s second bid and held CSC to the $372,000 price. When CSC refused to be bound by its first bid, Bostrum sued. The trial court found that Bostrum reasonably relied on CSC’s winning bid in preparing its own bid and awarded Bostrum damages for the extra time and expense it incurred to hire another ventilation subcontractor.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Nelson, J.)

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