Stochastic Solutions delivers consulting and software in the area of data analysis with a specific focus on customer behaviour modelling. We combine a modern software engineering mindset with deep knowledge and experience of large-scale data and predictive modelling. As a result, we deploy high-quality, tested, large-scale self-monitoring modelling and analysis systems to our clients, using a mixture of standard, packaged and custom software.
Our team combines experience and perspectives from mathematics, statistics, machine learning, software engineering, quality assurance and testing, parallel processing, visualization, and operational research. We produce our own software for data analysis (Miró and the Artists Suite) which we use in conjunction with standard (mostly free and open source) software to deliver client solutions. We place great emphasis on correctness and robustness of solutions, and carry over many of the ideas from software engineering (such as test-driven development, regression testing, automation, revision control) to the analytical domain, ensuring that as we develop and when we deliver solutions to clients, there can be confidence in the correctness and reliability of those solutions. Our analysis software, Miró, is specifically designed to allow efficient exploratory analysis while automatically logging both executable scripts and full results, as well as creating a powerful audit trail and production-ready output. As a result, we are able to move seamlessly from exploratory analysis and prototyping to deliverable solutions without the need to translate or re-implement algorithms or code.
|Chief Executive Officer
Stochastic Solutions was founded by Nick Radcliffe to help companies with targeting and optimization.
Prior to founding Stochastic Solutions, Nick founded and acted as Chief Technology Officer for Quadstone Limited, an Edinburgh-based software house that specialized in helping companies to improve their customer targeting. While there, he led the development of a radically new algorithmic approach to targeting direct marketing which has repeatedly proved capable of delivering dramatic improvements to the profitability of both traditional outbound and more modern inbound marketing approaches, in an approach known as uplift modelling. Quadstone was acquired by Portrait Software in late 2005.
Through working with many companies in financial services, telecommunications and other sectors, it became clear to Nick that uplift modelling can provably increase the profitability of direct marketing for most large B2C companies. However, it became equally clear that there are many non-analytical challenges that prevent the majority of companies from being ready even to evaluate this approach at present, let alone to benefit from it. One of the founding visions of Stochastic Solutions is to help companies improve their approach to the systematic design and measurement of direct marketing activities in ways that bring immediate benefits while also preparing them to be able to evaluate properly the potentially huge benefits of adopting this radical new approach. The concepts around uplift modelling are discussed in his blog, The Scientific Marketer.
Nick is also a Visiting Professor of Mathematics at the University of Edinburgh, working in the Operational Research group. His research has focused on the use of randomized (stochastic) approaches to optimization, and he was one of the early researchers in the now established field of genetic algorithms and evolutionary computation. He has over many years successfully applied stochastic methods to real-world industrial and commercial problems as diverse as retail dealership location, credit scoring, production scheduling and gas pipeline design, and has published several dozen research papers in the area. He has also, while at Quadstone, combined stochastic optimization with data mining to allow new classes of problems to be tackled.