Nemetschek Brands ALLPLAN, SCIA, and FRILO Join Forces

Editor’s Note: On February 21, 2024, the Nemetschek Group, the parent company of several leading AEC applications used globally, announced that three of its companies ALLPLAN, FRILO, and SCIA, would join forces. AECbytes spoke with Eduardo Lazzarotto, Chief Product & Strategy Officer of ALLPLAN to get a better understanding of the merger.



Please provide a brief overview of each of these three companies. What do they do? How long have they been part of the Nemetschek portfolio?

ALLPLAN is a global provider of BIM design to build software for the AEC industry. We focus on innovating design-to-build workflows to empower architects, engineers, and construction professionals to deliver building and infrastructure projects more productively, with higher quality and greater sustainability.

SCIA is one of the world’s leading developers of structural design and analysis software and with the multi-material structural analysis solution SCIA Engineer, it provides a tool for analysis and design of 3D models.

FRILO is a leading provider of innovative calculation programs, providing structural engineers with a large portfolio and efficient process to run component-based calculations on load bearing capacity and stability of building structures made of reinforced concrete, steel, timber and masonry.

ALLPLAN can trace its roots back to the foundation of Prof. Nemetschek’s Munich-based “Engineering Office for the Building Industry” in 1963. FRILO Software became part of the Nemetschek Group in 1999 and SCIA in 2006.

How have these three companies been working together until now, before the merger?

As part of the Nemetschek group, we have been working together closely for many years, both in the sense of our OPEN BIM ethos to enable progressive and future-proof approaches to AEC collaboration, and also based upon open standards such as IFC from buildingSMART. ALLPLAN has additionally worked for years on direct file exchange workflows with both FRILO and SCIA.

Most recently, ALLPLAN and SCIA developed the AutoConverter, a tool that revolutionized the integration of structural modeling with structural analysis solutions. This cloud-based application enables a structural model to be converted into an analysis model in one click, and that analysis model can later be imported into your structural analysis solution, using the open Structural Analysis Format (SAF). This enabled the worlds of architectural and structural modeling to be combined with structural and analytical engineering via productive and time saving workflows. Naturally, both SCIA Engineer and FRILO are connected to Allplan via this workflow.

So, we have been working together closely on multiple ways for our clients to improve their workflows.

What will change after the merger? 

With this merger, ALLPLAN not only significantly extends its solution offering within the engineering sector, to include structural analysis and design, but also strengthens its market position in Europe. The merger provides a unique solution for architects and engineers from one company: ALLPLAN offers a single BIM platform for the AEC industry from first concept through detailed design and multidisciplinary planning to comprehensive prefabrication and construction deliverables. SCIA and FRILO deliver extensive software for structural analysis and design.

Joining forces will strengthen our delivery capabilities, drive innovation, and enable us to offer powerful end-to-end design to build workflows, with a strong emphasis on structural engineering. A new and combined go-to-market approach will also accelerate the path to data-driven multi-material design and prefabrication, providing significant productivity benefits for customers.

What will be the name of the combined company?

Currently, we have no plans to change the ALLPLAN name of the combined company. SCIA and FRILO will, in a planned fashion, over time, merge into ALLPLAN. There is also high market brand recognition for ALLPLAN, SCIA and FRILO in several of our key markets. Importantly, the product brand recognition is also high, and we anticipate therefore retaining the product brand names.

Will all the products be combined, or will they still be separate products? What can customers of these products expect?

No, we do not plan to combine products. The Allplan, SCIA Engineer and FRILO products will continue to be offered as independent products. Our aim is to harmonize these software solutions and thus map efficient end-to-end workflows in the design to build process of building and infrastructure projects to support our users increasing their productivity. Allplan, SCIA and FRILO software will undergo updates and new developments in the usual innovation cycles. The existing teams will also continue to be responsible for improving the interoperability between the products with integrated solutions to bring additional value to users.

Do you have any customers who have already been using two or all three of these products?

Indeed, we do. We have many joint customers, located all around the world, from the Americas to Europe and Asia. There are many stunning examples of projects completed using our joint products, from landmark high-rise buildings and residential developments to sports stadiums and infrastructure projects.

A huge new residential area is being planned in Bad Aibling, Bavaria, Germany. The engineering firm used FRILO software to create a verifiable and traceable structural analysis. The model data was created using Allplan and then transferred to the BIM-Connector via an IFC file and integrated into FRILO.

In a project for an underground car park in Oradea, Romania, Allplan was an essential tool for modeling the real 3D structure on which the new building was positioned. The BIM model from Allplan was then sent to SCIA Engineer for analysis. The steel and glass structure were modeled on top of the concrete infrastructure.

How does the merger of these companies/products benefit the AEC industry at large?

As we all know, the AEC industry is changing rapidly. There are more infrastructure projects globally, shortages of skilled labor and increasing requirements for project transparency and data, that are all driving digitization. This merger will enable further digital integration for AEC companies, improving workflows and ultimately enabling earlier data driven decision making across design, engineering, fabrication, and construction. AEC professionals will benefit from greater productivity and for example, being able to consider buildability as early as possible, to understand the pre-fabrication, construction, or site layout challenges to make better design decisions to improve sustainability, reduce waste, and improve safety.

We anticipate that joining forces will strengthen our delivery and a new and combined approach will accelerate the path to data-driven multi-material design and prefabrication.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in AECbytes sponsored articles are those of the sponsor and do not represent or reflect the views of AECbytes.

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