The government has put out a tender of between £750 million and £2 billion for a new national framework agreement.
Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) is seeking private sector partners to ensure the government's targets for broadband coverage and speed are met.
The coalition is committed to delivering a minimum of 2Mb broadband nationwide by 2015, and has set aside an initial £530 million to bring broadband services to rural communities.
Computing.co.uk reported that up to 12 qualified suppliers will be needed to carry out infrastructure work.
The BDUK tender quote said that the body is seeking to establish a framework agreement of suitably qualified suppliers "capable of delivering local broadband projects as required" by local bodies or groups of local bodies in regions throughout the UK.
"The framework agreement is expected to be the procurement vehicle for the majority of local broadband projects once they have been allocated BDUK funding," it added.
"There may be a small number of local broadband projects that do not use the framework agreement and this will be agreed with BDUK."