On Tuesday, leading representatives of the German petroleum industry came together for the 14th IFLEXX meeting in Bochum. Organized by Hamburg-based IT and consulting company Implico, the all-day meeting was attended by a total of 14 companies from the refinery, tank terminal, trade, service station, software and consulting sectors.
Together the attendees looked back on the ten-year success story of IFLEXX. What began as a shared idea in 2008 is now regarded nationwide as the de facto standard for data communication in the oil and gas industry. The delegates of the attending companies also assessed the benefits offered by IFLEXX and discussed the challenges ahead. In a segment entitled “Compartment Handling”, they exchanged ideas on what the ideal data transfer between freight forwarders and tank terminals should look like in practice. Another key point of discussion was the synchronization of the IFLEXX standard, which is mainly used in German-speaking countries, with the widely used international PIDX standard.
IFLEXX (which stands for International File Exchange XML) is a standardized open source format for exchanging data between oil and gas companies. This format offers its users significant advantages, for example when transmitting detailed data records or sending loading data in different directions. The IFLEXX community meets once or twice a year to discuss the application, extension and adaptation of the XML-based standard.
“In regard to data communication, the German petroleum industry is very well positioned – not least because of the open IFLEXX format and the many possibilities it offers,” says Stephan Buhre, Managing Director at Implico GmbH and IFLEXX specialist.
“The 14th community meeting was a full success. On the one hand, the strong participation and the active exchange show the great importance IFLEXX has achieved within the oil and gas industry in the last ten years. And on the other hand, we also managed to discuss key points to render cross-company data exchange even more effective in the future.”