SIMCO (in Italian, Sistema Informativo Mondiale sulle Costruzioni)
is an Information System developed and commercialized by Cresme
Research S.P.A. aimed to provide strategic awareness of the international construction
sector at single country level. SIMCO is a set of standards and processes to develop,
manage, update, analyze and distribute construction data.
The system was developed by Cresme in 2009 in order to fulfill a growing demand
of information and statistical data for international construction markets. Today
SIMCO covers 150 Countries and provides detailed investment breakdown for the 2000-2018
time period, including short-midterm forecasts. Information on housing, non-residential
building and civil engineering are available within the system, further split between
new investment and renewal and maintenance activity.
The System is updated quarterly and is available in many formats: database files;
country fact sheets; in depth country analysis; interactive dashboards. Depending on client
needs, Cresme provides different custom offering options.
The so called SIMCO score is also included in the data-base. The score is designed
to provide a synthetic index of market opportunity with respect to the short-midterm
scenario, taking into account, other than economic and sectorial growth, of political
and economic stability, propensity to attract foreign investments, and indicators
of market openness and ease of doing business.
SIMCO also features a huge macroeconomic and socio-economics data base that is freely
distributed within any subscription.
Definition and features
Main definitions and features of SIMCO are summarized below:
- Surveyed phenomenon: yearly Gross Fixed Investments in the construction sector;
- Measure: billions of euro at constant prices (usually with respect to the
- Time coverage: recent time series (2000 - previous year) and short-medium
term forecasts (current year – four years onward);
- Retrospective: time series starting from 1990 (on demand);
- Sectorial splitting: Residential building (one-two family houses, flats, detached
houses, etc.). Non-residential building (Industrial warehouses, commercial buildings,
hospitals, schools, sports hall, hotels, offices, etc.). Civil engineering (Roads, motorways, airports, ports, energy
infrastructures, telecommunications networks, water, etc.). For each sector: new
construction investments and renewal and renovation expenditures. Where possible:
further new non-residential investment distinction between industrial buildings, commercial buildings and other.
- Auxiliary information: among the others, construction activity (building
permits, public tenders, housing completions, etc.), sectorial production indexes,
macro-economic data (output, investments, FDI, prices, exchange rates, unemployment,
tourism flows, etc.), socio-demographic variables (population distribution, households,
income distribution), indexes of ease of doing business and economic freedom.
- Update is quarterly, usually in the months of January, April, July and
- Output: many output options are available: Database files in the most suitable
formats (dbf, csv, xlsx, txt, etc.); Fact sheets for each country, or aggregates
(geographic or thematic), giving a telling synthesis of data market and the macroeconomic
environment; Construction market analysis in relation with business environment
and the economic outlook, including: tables, figures and maps (also on demand);
Interactive analytic dashboards in excel or in the Tableau Software packaged format (.twbx), eventually available
online directly via browser.
SIMCO World Monitor within SIMCO dashboard (currently available in Italian)
Starting from 2014 SIMCO is featuring a World Monitor, that is a collection of economic
and geo-political news at single country level gathered by Cresme researchers. For
each country, sectorial news and economic analysis are selected and provided in
a uniform and interactive environment, accessible via the SIMCO dashboards, with
the aim of providing all the information needed to depict country scenarios and
The so called SIMCO score is a synthetic score, updated regularly, designed to provide
a suitable scoring for the most interesting countries in the short-midterm scenario,
in terms of sector expectations, macroeconomic outlook, business environment and
political and economic risk.
The score is defined in two steps: first, the macroeconomic indicators are used
to define a base score (also available within the system), which allows to classify
countries on the basis of mid-term economic and market outlooks. The base index
only provides an indication of the economic scenario, assigning a higher score to
countries where it is expected an high combined growth of construction investment
and GDP per capita, together with a higher level of forecasted fixed investment
with respect to GDP, that represents, literally, the investment effort expected
in a country. GDP per-capita is used as a proxy of the private availability to invest,
and it is the only proxy of this kind practicable for international comparisons.
Then, in order to take into account of conditions of the political and economic
context, an index of political risk is employed. The country risk index is defined
by a weighted average of the SACE indications about: risk of war
and civil unrest; country ratings for the risk of nationalization and expropriation
and country rating for transferring and convertibility. Also indication about counterpart
risk, that is the risk that the counterpart may fail to honor obligations arising
from a commercial or financial contract (Bank, small or large enterprises, Sovereign),
Another aspect taken into account is the opening of the economic system, that is,
all those aspects, regulatory, social and cultural, which favor (or oppose) the
business activity and the flow of foreign capital. At this purpose, the Index of Economic Freedom
SIMCO Score control panel
Starting from the Basic-Score, the final score (Score SIMCO) is defined by a mechanism
of penalty / reward. That is, starting from statistical distribution of the indicators,
a penalty is assigned, in percentage of the basic score, to countries that are over
the higher percentiles for Political risks and Counterpart risk, and a premium in
the case of higher level of economic and business freedom. A penalty is also given
to countries with respect to the market size in order to take into account of market
inertia (that is a measure of short term market stability). The SIMCO score is provided
within the SIMCO dashboard and allows the user to define custom rankings by managing
suitable filters to control the importance to be given to economic and risk parameters.
The SIMCO data base could be explored by using dashboards. A dashboard is an easy
to read real-time user interface that allows to navigate a large data set of information
and stats within a graphical and interactive environment; dashboards are designed
to easily communicate historical trends and depict scenarios in a rapid, easy, clear,
and fashioning way.
Dashboards are customized by Cresme developers according to clients’ needs and indications.
By default, SIMCO features an analytic dashboard (SIMCO dashboard) designed by Cresme
developers to provide an efficient analysis environment. The standard SIMCO dashboard
include many different sections:
- Exploring general trends;
- Analyzing and comparing size relationships among countries or aggregates;
- Obtaining synthetic country profiles;
- Discovering country sector structures and scenario analysis;
- Data warehousing to compose and export data tables;
- Navigating among interactive and dynamic figures, maps and plots
- Working the SIMCO score control panel;
- Browsing auxiliary information through ad-hoc exploring dashboards.
SIMCO dashboard: country profiles
SIMCO is characterized by a methodological approach focused on a constant and progressive
refinement of construction data quality and disaggregation. From a methodological
point of view, SIMCO can be seen as a set of standards and processes to develop,
manage, update, analyze and distribute data.
The developing process starts with a set of Data Base operations: collecting data
from different sources; controlling and validating; cleaning and storing. Then,
many statistical operation are put in place, for instance: estimation of missing
values; statistical synthesis (indicators developing); forecasting. Finally, the
important phase of data distribution is tackled, for instance, by reporting, by
the developing of data visualization tools (SIMCO dashboard) and by providing tools
for data warehousing (i.e. a system for querying the data base and extracting data).
A synthetic scheme of the SIMCO developing process is here summarized:
- Database operation:
- Review of the available statistical sources for each country;
- Definition and updating of a data catalogue (confidential), including metadata and
data release schedules;
- Prioritization of the selected sources (priority is given to official statistical
- Data collection
- Validation, cleaning and storing of basic information by means of standard statistical
methods (clustering, regression, panel analysis, etc.);
- Statistical Analysis:
- Estimating missing values and developing models for sector splitting based on the
- Development and implementation of econometric models for forecasting;
- Expert country by country validation and control of the forecasting model output;
- Synthesis and definition of suitable indicators and indexes;
- Data distribution:
- Data Warehousing;
- Dashboard design for data analysis and visualization;
- Reporting activity, standard and on demand (World and country outlooks, in-depth
analysis of specific subsectors, scenario developing, etc.).
SIMCO features all the available construction data for the principal World economies,
but also includes general economic and construction market information for many
small and emerging countries that are usually excluded from other sectorial data-banks.
Among this, 42 Sub-Saharan countries, 12 South American economies, all the emerging
As a whole, 150 Countries are included in the data base, covering the 99% of World
total gross domestic product and the 98% of World population.
The current SIMCO country list is presented here (note that the 19* Euroconstruct
countries are distributed according to Euroconstruct network subscription conditions):
- Europe (Albania, Austria*, Belgium*, Bulgaria, Denmark*, Finland*, France*,
Germany*, United Kingdom*, Greece, Ireland*, Italy, Iceland, Montenegro, Serbia,
Norway*, The Netherlands*, Poland*, Portugal*, Romania, Spain*, Sweden*, Switzerland*,
Ukraine, Hungary*, Russia, Estonia, Lettonia, Lituania, Croatia, Slovenia, Bosnia
and Herzegovina, Macedonia, Moldova, Slovak Republic*, Belarus, Czech Republic*,
Armenia, Georgia, Malta, Cipro, Lussemburgo)
- Africa (Algeria, Angola, Côte d'Ivoire, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi,
Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, Egypt, Ethiopia, Gabon,
Gambia, Ghana, Djibouti, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya,
Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Morocco, Mauritania, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria,
Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Sudan, Swaziland,
Tanzania, Togo,Tunisia, Uganda, Congo-Democratic Republic, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Eritrea)
- North Africa (Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Morocco, Tunisia)
- Asia (Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Myanmar, Brunei
Darussalam, Cambodia, Sri Lanka, China, Korea-south, United Arab Emirates, Philippines,
Japan, Jordan, India, Indonesia, Iran, Israel, Kuwait, Lao People's Democratic Republic,
Lebanon, Malaysia, Mongolia, Nepal, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Singapore, Syria, Thailand,
Turkey, Vietnam, Yemen, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, Taiwan,
Turkmenistan, Iraq, Azerbaijan)
- Middle East (Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, United Arab Emirates, Jordan, Iran, Israel,
Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, Syrian, Yemen)
- Oceania (Australia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea)
- South America (Costa Rica, Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador,
Guyana, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay, Venezuela)
- North America (Canada, Mexico, United States)
- BRIICS (Brazil, Russia, India, Indonesia, China, South Africa)
SIMCO country map-list
List of available data
A non-exhaustive list of SIMCO available indicators, together with a short description
and the unity of measure, can be found in the table below.
Offering and Prices
SIMCO is distributed by Cresme Research s.p.a., which, depending on client needs,
develop different offering subscription options.
Subscriptions are composed by choosing the spatial coverage (number of countries),
the information coverage (number of interest variables, that is the number of construction
sector and subsector of interest, e.g. total civil engineering, residential new,
total construction, etc.), the frequency of the updates (that is, the number of
updates to receive within an year).
All options include the full socio-economic data-base for countries and areas, the
World Monitor and the SIMCO Score for the selected countries. Quarterly updates
are available indicatively in the months of January, April; July; October.
Discounts are given as the quantity of information requested increases, and many
promotional offers are offered by Cresme. Moreover, Cresme associates can obtain
the system at a special price (-30% of the current price).
SIMCO is not a static system but is developed to be easily extended. The client
could require a system extension, for instance, to cover specific sectors (construction
material or products), to receive further investment splitting (for instance, road
infrastructure, or energy infrastructure, rather than information on school buildings,
hotels or offices), to include specific countries or region or specific indicators.
Moreover, the client could ask Cresme to use SIMCO data base to provide specific
market analysis and to develop specific scenarios for some sector or country.
SIMCO is a brand of Cresme Ricerche s.p.a., Piazza Mincio 2, 00198, Rome, Italy.
To receive a custom offering call to: +390688807100 or visit our page
Obtaining the system