My name is Scott Sumner and I have taught economics at Bentley University for the past 27 years. I earned a BA in economics at Wisconsin and a PhD at Chicago. My research has been in the field of monetary economics, particularly the role of the gold standard in the Great Depression. I had just begun research on the relationship between cultural values and neoliberal reforms, when I got pulled back into monetary economics by the current crisis.
Dr. Ahanotu is a graduate of Stanford University with over twenty years of experience doing analytic modeling, executing pricing strategies through price optimization, and implementing, developing, and selling enterprise software. He adds to this industry experience another five overlapping years of research in knowledge management and organizational learning. Duru Ahanotu, Ph.D. founded Ahan Analytics, LLC to deliver sustainable, data-driven approaches for improving business performance. He recognizes the unique challenges companies face in leveraging their data to increase revenues, become more efficient, and drive profitability.
Before launching Ahan Analytics, LLC, Dr. Ahanotu was last a Sales Consultant in the Advertiser and Publisher Solutions (APS) group within Microsoft Advertising. In this capacity, he provided product knowledge, functional expertise, and technical support to APS account executives who sold APS’s suite of media monetization products. He led product demonstrations and increased the productivity of the sales team by training and certifying employees on the use and demonstration of the software. Dr. Ahanotu took on this role after Microsoft acquired his former employer Rapt, Inc. Rapt provided software solutions for maximizing revenue and yield for online media publishers.
With Rapt, Dr. Ahanotu last served as an Engagement Manager for a software implementation for a $100 million on-line publisher with a rapidly growing business. With his project team, Dr. Ahanotu created and coordinated novel approaches to inventory forecasting, structuring of product hierarchies, and ETL across software systems for order management, advertising delivery, and Rapt’s software. He also generated a step-by-step methodology for interpreting and using the results of price optimization.
As a Solutions Architect, Dr. Ahanotu served as the lead Solutions Consultant on client engagements and provided technical assistance and guidance to Solutions Consultants on other projects. Dr. Ahanotu designed and implemented price optimization solutions, demonstrating expertise in mathematical modeling, pricing, data analysis, SQL, and relational data models. He led discussions with customers and internal teams to improve implementation processes and product design.
Dr. Ahanotu held oversight responsibility for the analytic modeling for two projects using Price Director, Rapt’s price optimization software. Each project supported pricing decisions in Fortune 50 businesses: one business was a leading online media publisher, and the other was a rapidly growing technology company in a low margin business. Dr. Ahanotu helped the latter client integrate Price Director into pricing workflow. As part of this first-ever client implementation of Price Director, he worked closely with Product Management, Analytic Development, and Software Engineering to ensure that early-stage product functionality met client needs.
Dr. Ahanotu contributed several new methodologies for implementing Price Director analytics and conceptual frameworks for training clients on these analytics. He is a contributor on a related Rapt patent: “Method and System for Producing Optimized Prices for Products for Sale.” Dr. Ahanotu presented a white paper on the pricing of New Product Introductions at the 2006 INFORMS Annual Meeting. The Professional Pricing Society published this paper in The Journal of Professional Pricing (Vol. 16, No. 1, First Quarter 2007) as “Pricing New Products: Turning Portfolio Uncertainty Into Profits.”
Prior to Rapt, Dr. Ahanotu was a consultant with Integral, Inc, a small strategic management consulting firm. During his three-year tenure, he consulted on product development and technology strategy focused on high tech and pharmaceutical companies. Prior to Integral, he developed mathematical programming algorithms for managing and optimizing “Y2K” projects as an independent contractor. Prior to this work, he implemented expert systems for diagnosing and troubleshooting automotive and semiconductor manufacturing equipment as a Business Solutions Project Manager and Consultant for Expert Edge, Inc.
Dr. Ahanotu earned a Master’s and Ph.D. in Engineering-Economic Systems (1999), a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering, and Honors in Values, Technology, Science, and Society (1991) - all at Stanford University.
Marc Chandler has been covering the global capital markets in one fashion or another for 25 years, working at economic consulting firms and global investment banks. A prolific writer and speaker he appears regularly on CNBC and has spoken for the Foreign Policy Association. In addition to being quoted in the financial press daily, Chandler has been published in the Financial Times, Foreign Affairs, and the Washington Post. In 2009 Chandler was named a Business Visionary by Forbes.
Marc's commentary can be found at his blog (www.marctomarket.com) and twitter www.twitter.com/marcmakingsense
Dr Pirrong is Professor of Finance, and Energy Markets Director for the Global Energy Management Institute at the Bauer College of Business of the University of Houston. He was previously Watson Family Professor of Commodity and Financial Risk Management at Oklahoma State University, and a faculty member at the University of Michigan, the University of Chicago, and Washington University. Professor Pirrong's research focuses on the organization of financial exchanges, derivatives clearing, competition between exchanges, commodity markets, derivatives market manipulation, the relation between market fundamentals and commodity price dynamics, and the implications of this relation for the pricing of commodity derivatives. He has published 30 articles in professional publications, is the author of three books, and has consulted widely, primarily on commodity and market manipulation-related issues. He holds a Ph.D. in business economics from the University of Chicago.
Michael T. Snyder is a graduate of the McIntire School of Commerce at the University of Virginia and has two law degrees from the University of Florida. He is an attorney that has worked for some of the largest and most prominent law firms in Washington D.C. and who now resides outside of Seattle, Washington. He is a very active blogger and is also a respected researcher, writer, speaker and activist. You can follow him on The Economic Collapse blog: http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/
Ashraf Eassa is a technology specialist with The Motley Fool. He writes mostly about technology stocks, but is especially interested in anything related to chips -- the semiconductor kind, that is.