None of the individual submissions completely satisfied the Treasury, but R. Hill thought "Several of the communications display much ingenuity and contain many useful suggestions; still I am not aware that any plan has been prepared which, however excellent, is, as a whole, fit for adoption. I hope to be able, however by combining the suggestions of many, to propose a plan....". Although Perkins, Bacon & Petch had neither submitted suggestions in the competition, nor applied for the business of the printing, H. Cole (assistant to Mr. Hill) chose to consult the firm on December 2, 1839. As a result of the conversation, Mr. Bacon could later answer the 1852 Select Committee on Postage Label Stamps' question: "Being first rate copper-plate engravers, you came in contact with this business first, when it was first introduced?" with the following reply. "I will tell you how; we were not among any of the 200 or 300 applicants for the prizes, and for the work of the Government. So far from favouritism towards us, we did not even apply, and had never dreamt of having the work to do; but after the whole of the plans had been investigated, and from some cause or other, not being found to answer, then a gentlemen, Mr. Cole, came to us and said, `Why did you not put in for the contract?' I answered, `We cannot put in, the probability is that the Government wants some cheap kind of thing that copper-plate cannot compete with, and your size is too large.' I said, `You want envelopes, and steel plates could not be made at the price that the Government would give.' He said, `Oh you are quite deceived; an inch would do for us.' Then I replied, `We can compete,' and we took a little time, when we promised to give him everything he wanted. We made drawings that were approved of, and from that hour to this, we have done everything that we pledged ourselves to do."
The day following their December 2nd. meeting with Mr. Cole, Perkins, Bacon & Petch proposed supplying the stamps for 8 d. per 1,000 labels, exclusive of paper. The die and plates to be supplied by the firm, and an estimate of 41,600 labels per day, per press at work.