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Bentley acquires SpecWave

AMSTERDAM, Netherlands, Nov. 13, 2012 – Bentley Systems today announced that it has acquired SpecWave software, a solution that helps architectural, engineering, construction, and operations (AECO) professionals author and configure structured text content, including engineering specifications and related codes and standards. SpecWave makes specifications an integral aspect of information modeling, creating text objects to be change-managed by Bentley’s eB Insight – facilitating and enforcing enterprise, project, and owner standards, and delivering documents that are rigorous, controlled, and connected throughout the project and asset lifecycle, to save time and improve quality and performance.

Through SpecWave, eB Insight, and the forthcoming Bentley CONNECT SaaS environment that enables infrastructure practitioners to connect enterprises, projects, content, and individuals with each other, Bentley Specification Services will enable specifications to be purposefully shared across distributed, multidisciplinary project, operations, and inspection teams. Other inaugural Bentley CONNECT capabilities will include Bentley Connection Space, Bentley Simulation Services, and extensions to ProjectWise collaboration services and AssetWise asset lifecycle information management services. Additionally, Bentley CONNECT will provide subscribers with software update services, Bentley Institute learning services, and more.

Bhupinder Singh, senior vice president, Bentley Software, said, “We are pleased to welcome back to Bentley Leon Gorbaty and Adam Klatzkin, principals of The Engineering Essentials Company (TEEC) and the inventors of SpecWave. Together, we will finally enable information management to comprehend the mission-critical AECO content within documents – transparent to human readers but hitherto inscrutable to software. Specs and other structured documents are crucially important across projects, engineering disciplines, and the lifecycle of assets – from design throughout bidding and contractual processes, construction work packaging, and inspections, and ultimately for operational reliability and safety. But up to now, no one has accomplished the breakthroughs in rigor necessary for securing information mobility, with integrity, for text objects.”

He continued, “Leon and Adam changed all of this by making it possible to reach inside structured documents to parse and organize the content at the semantic level of individual and unique text objects. As a result, integral constituent parts of documents can now be harvested, persisted, accessed, repurposed, change-managed, and controlled, with text objects becoming a new fundamental data type for Bentley. Accordingly, we can next leverage the full enterprise-level information management capabilities of our eB Insight services for essential document contents starting with specifications, but also including, for example, compliance and safety documents. Finally, through Bentley CONNECT, Bentley Specification Services will enable corporate, project, and owner spec standards to be maintained, shared, tracked, and enforced across teams, projects, and enterprises.”

Early on, the Construction Sciences Research Foundation (CSRF) saw the potential for SpecWave to provide significant benefit to industry and last year joined Bentley as an investor in TEEC. According to Raymond Best, the president of CSRF’s Board of Directors, “We’re confident that our early investment in TEEC has already yielded returns for the industry through the breakthroughs provided by SpecWave. We’re equally confident that Bentley’s acquisition of SpecWave will provide the commitment and resources to ultimately deliver on our vision for the potential offered by SpecWave.”

SpecWave provides optimized editing for specification writers, with advanced attributes and tagging of content enforced by templates, and specification-driven process support for submittals, quality assurance, and other business workflows. SpecWave enables users to create, administer, and automate complex specifications and other content as highly portable SPECX files that can be leveraged in familiar workflows, exchanged as i-models, and now managed within ProjectWise and AssetWise.

SpecWave’s SPECX format has emerged as an endorsed standard for structured engineering content within Fiatech, an international community working together to lead global development and adoption of innovative practices and technologies to realize the highest business value throughout the lifecycle of capital assets. The Open Packing Conventions SPECX format was further developed, prototyped, and put into production as a result of collaboration through the Fiatech Specification Automation project. Per the Fiatech website, “By combining good fit for the subject-matter domain with a good fit for tools and application development, the SPECX file format and associated schemas deliver a solid foundation for the interoperability of the most important documents in the capital facilities industry.”

Commenting on his company’s use of the SPECX-based SpecWave program to improve its specification program, Eric Michnovez, manager of the Master Specs Program for ENR Top Design Firm #22 CDM Smith, said, “My users love the results, saying things like, ‘I love the new specs facilitated by SpecWave. I just did a specification, and it was awesome how it formatted. I finished editing it, and I was done! Where were these tools before?’ and ‘How wonderful that CDM Smith has created Master Specs with a refined look and feel. What a pleasure to finally use styles and other ease-of-use features. It’s clever that we can ‘keep’ all comments and always retrieve them.’”
Leon Gorbaty, formerly CEO of TEEC and now director of product management at Bentley, said, “We have been continually surprised and gratified at the interest at executive levels in adopting SpecWave to capture and to begin to advance the quality of project and enterprise specification standards for architecture, engineering, and owner organizations. Its combination with Bentley’s eB Insight for industrial-strength information management is an exciting development that rapidly accelerates our progress to fulfill these unmet needs of our many SpecWave enterprise prospects. And the Bentley CONNECT SaaS environment will enable Bentley Specification Services to reach and benefit every specs constituent. I’m glad to be engaged in this important work within the Bentley team.”

Additional information about SpecWave is available at

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