-way finite element mesh (FEM) decomposition problem is an NP-complete problem, which consists of finding a decomposition of a FEM into
balanced submeshes such that the number of cut edges is minimized. The multilevel ant-colony algorithm (MACA) is quite new and promising hybrid approach for solving different type of FEM-decomposition problems. The MACA is a swarm-based algorithm and therefore inherently suitable for parallel processing on many levels. Motivated by the good performance of the MACA and the possibility to improve it’s performance (computational cost and/or solution quality), in this paper we discuss the results of parallelizing the MACA on largest scale (on colony level). Explicitly, we present the distributed MACA (DMACA) approach, which is based on the idea of parallel independent runs enhanced with cooperation in form of a solution exchange among the concurrent searches. Experimental evaluation of the DMACA on a larger set of benchmark FEM-decomposition problems shows that the DMACA compared to the MACA can obtain solutions of equal quality in less computational time.