The Global Language of Business

Digital & Green Transformation at the core of new partnership

Oct 18, 2021, by Maria Svejdar - Category: Construction

Three global organisations, Cobuilder, Fexillon and GS1 collaborate on a pilot project that seeks to demonstrate the benefits of standards-based data sharing throughout all phases of construction and asset lifecycle management. 

By working together, the three organisations are combining their expertise to deliver a proof-of-concept for a complete solution that enables the free flow of trusted, standardised product and asset data across the supply chain.  

With a holistic approach to standards-based data management and product identification, combined with the use of a Common Data Environment (CDE) that serves as a single repository for all product and asset data, the project’s goal is to illustrate how business processes can be improved, costs can be reduced and sustainability and regulatory requirements can be fulfilled in an efficient way. 

Meet the Partners


Fexillon was founded in Ireland by Kieran Beggan and George Harold and is an award-winning company that has developed a structured methodology and software applications for managing building information for the entire asset lifecycle. Fexillon manages mission-critical information for blue-chip companies across several sectors in Ireland, UK, Europe and the US. The Fexillon solution enables all stakeholders to store, share and update all building and project information in a secure data environment. Central to Fexillon’s on-going service delivery and support is the set-up, coordination and management of their clients’ building and project information delivering standards-based solutions to meet those challenges and drive efficiencies in their organisations. 

George Harold, CEO, Fexillon:

George Harold CEO

“The industry is going through a major shift that will require us to review, define and implement standards-led Digital Building Information Management Strategies. Building and infrastructure projects should be specified with the right standards to ensure a single source of truth throughout the Asset Lifecycle. Given the ever increasing complexity of built environments, the only way forward in pursuit of efficiency, safety and sustainability is open communication and joint effort between industry professionals. We are pleased to collaborate with GS1 and Cobuilder to demonstrate what we can achieve with a standardised common digital language and information management strategy.” 


Cobuilder offers an IT platform that employs all relevant international standards for data management to help construction industry actors exploit the potential of product data. Fit-for-purpose and accurate product data improves quality of service, time to market and reduces time, cost and environmental footprint.  Cobuilder is a privately-owned international business with more than 120 employees spread across HQ in Oslo and wholly-owned subsidiaries in England, France and Bulgaria. The company is a major driver for digitisation in Construction, a strategic contributor to ISO, buildingSMART, CEN and CENELEC and a winner of several innovation awards internationally.  

Speaking at the commencement of the collaboration Lars Fredenlund, CEO, Cobuilder, commented,

Lars Fredelund CEO Cobuilder

“It takes a whole ecosystem to drive change in the inefficiency practices that are deeply ingrained in the construction sector. In order to build high quality, modern buildings and infrastructure, to create smart cities, the whole supply chain needs to function like a single organism. The way to achieve this is by learning to speak the same digital language in the form of data. I strongly believe that implementing industry standards is the key to establishing such universal language across the supply chain, and this is what we have set out to do together with Fexillon and GS1.” 

GS1 Ireland - The Global Language of Business

GS1 is a neutral, not-for-profit organisation that develops and maintains the most widely used global standards for efficient business communication. GS1 standards improve the efficiency, safety and visibility of supply chains across physical and digital channels in 25 sectors. GS1’s scale and reach with local Member Organisations in 115 countries, 2 million user companies and 6 billion transactions every day, create a common language that supports systems and processes across the globe. The current collaboration efforts with Cobuilder and Fexillon are being championed by GS1 Ireland and GS1 Norway. 

Mike Byrne, CEO, GS1 Ireland

Mike Byrne CEO GS1 Ireland

 “Identification is at the heart of digitalisation. It enables the assignment of properties, the selection and procurement of products, as well as supporting the various processes of manufacturing, logistics, assembly, building operations and facilities management. Ultimately, the circular economy will depend on open, globally unique, inter-operable and persistent identification of materials, products, spaces and maintainable assets. GS1 welcomes the opportunity of working with our like-minded partners, Cobuilder and Fexillon to show how this common digital language can be delivered.” 

The new collaboration aims to empower all stakeholders in the built environment supply chain to benefit from improved efficiency, safety, transparency, security and sustainability gains, enabled by the exchange of trusted data, through the adoption of existing international standards. 

Many of the challenges currently faced by the construction industry relating to costs, sustainability, safety and data management can readily be addressed through the adoption of existing standards and technologies. These foundational international standards, that include IFC, IFD, IDM, EN ISO 19650, EN ISO 23386, EN ISO 23387 and GS1, provide visibility, certainty and assurance in relation to all phases of design, construction and facilities management. 

Golden Thread Diagram

In addition to Building Information Modelling (BIM) standards, the use of GS1 global standards for product and location identification, combined with standardised product data templates and the right asset information management strategy, can yield massive cost savings for all parties, while simultaneously helping businesses to meet key sustainability and regulatory requirements. 

The first objective of the work group is to create a working demonstration model connecting real world materials and assets and their digital twins using standardised data templates and common data environment. Taking the example of a window, the pilot will track the window and all its attributes, from the point of specification and design, through the manufacturing process and on to its installation. The pilot solution will demonstrate how the full lifespan of the window, through maintenance, repair and ultimate reuse and recycling, can be digitally recorded, tracked and reviewed. The demonstrator app, created by Fexillon with input on standards and data templates from Cobuilder and GS1, will enable each party along the supply chain to access all the relevant information about any construction product, enabling the efficient management of resources and assets throughout their lifecycle. 

For further information please contact us or visit the Partner websites:

PartnerFexillonCobuilder GS1 Ireland
Tel+353 (0)1 809 7262 + 44 20 38 07 44 89+ 353 1 208 0660


Tags: digital transformation, green transformation, sustainability, construction, cobuilder, IFS, GS1,