Other Houses harvesting spice under licence from House Harkonnen

My players have stated their interest in approaching some of the other Houses harvesting spice on Arrakis (other than Harkonnen) as they are considering ramping up their own House’s primary domain on manufacturing factory craft to include spice harvesters and are looking for potential clients.

In the House Harkonnen writeup in The Great Game (p38), it is stated that they offer franchise mining rights at vast fees.

So who do you think is likely to be participating?

I think that this is more of an enterprise befitting Major/Great Houses and not the Minor ones. Of the Houses in the book, am thinking possible contenders are Moritani, Novebruns, Richese (although they lost governorship of Arrakis to the Harkonnen and maybe are more likely to be involved in illegal refining/smuggling), and Thorvald - although there could certainly be no shortage of non-named Houses. Corrino are unlikely to bother since they get more than their fair share through taxation.

EDIT I should point out in our campaign it is only AG10,177 so some years still to go before the events of the first book.

It all depends on what you can offer the Harkonnens and how close you want to snuggle up to them.
They’ll only offer the less attractive areas, and take a cut, but there is still a lot of money to be made.

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The players don’t want to smuggle up to the Harkonnens at all but still want to potentially get into some spice action as a supplier to one of the other Houses who are harvesting under a franchise. Their competitor has already been found out to be manufacturing harvesters - presumably for Harkonnen but they only have circumstantial evidence at best of that.

Because the players’ House is reasonably favoured by the Atreides, they don’t want to do anything to jeapordise that relationship - so no (open) deals with Harkonnen…

Like many things in Dune, its all about the money.
If your House tells the Harkonnen it’ll take a troublesome area off their hands and run their own operation for some ludicrous percentage (say 50% of the profits) they’ll probably be happy. It’ll be a very high percentage as they’ll probably expect you to cheat them in some way and so factor that in.
How secret the deal is, well, that depends on what you can do for them…