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TreeNet® Won Major Competition - Swept All Four Categories

Salford Systems was the winner of the Teradata Center for CRM at Duke University 2003 predictive modeling and data mining tournament.

The Teradata Center for CRM at Duke University, a research, development, and information exchange center for analytical customer relationship management (CRM), was founded in 2000 at the Fuqua School of Business with a grant from NCR's Teradata division. The Center leverages the resources of a renowned academic institution and an industry leader to apply theory and practical business experience to CRM research and learning. The center has just concluded a real world predictive modeling tournament to forecast consumer churn in the telecommunications market. The tournament was intended to identify the best modeling practice for one of the most challenging problems facing telecommunications providers, a problem also faced by many other companies at risk of losing customers to competitors. Tournament participants were drawn from industry, consultants, research labs and academia, and were given several months to perfect their methods and predictions.

The tournament asked participants to create a churn scorecard, ranking all customers on their risk of "churn," that is, of leaving the company. Scorecards were evaluated on two core criteria: overall accuracy of the model (gini coefficient) and the ability of the model to capture churners in the top decile of the scorecard (lift). The scorecards were evaluated both on data from the last half of 2001 and "future" data from 2002. Applying the two criteria, (gini and lift) to the two sets of data (2001 and 2002) yielded four evaluations from each tournament participant.

The overall winner of the tournament was Salford Systems, a data mining software and services company, which placed first on all four evaluation criteria using TreeNet®, its newest data mining technology. This is the second time Salford Systems has won a major data mining competition. The company has also garnered other international awards and recognition for its technology and analytical services.

On June 13, 2003 the Teradata Center sponsored a session at the 2003 Marketing Science Conference during which the results of the churn tournament were presented.

A copy of the presentation detailing Salford's winning approach is available for downloadpdf icon; a brief summary is also available.

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