INCLINE VILLAGE, NV – September 12, 2014 – Risk analysis using Monte Carlo simulation is a popular form of advanced analytics for decision-making – often based on business and financial models in Microsoft Excel. Specialized Excel add-ins perform the compute-intensive simulation and statistical analysis. Doing this with web-based spreadsheets like Excel Online hasn’t been possible – until today.
Frontline Systems, developer of the Solver add-in that ships with Microsoft Excel, has released Risk Solver App, a free app for risk analysis using Monte Carlo simulation, available in the Microsoft Office Store, that works in Excel Online, the Excel Web App for SharePoint 2013, and desktop Excel 2013.
“We’re bringing advanced analytics for Excel users to the Web,” said Daniel Fylstra, Frontline’s President and CEO. “Risk Solver App for Monte Carlo simulation complements our Premium Solver App for optimization, and XLMiner Data Visualization App for data analysis.”
Advanced Analytics on Any Device, Any Time
Users can now run Monte Carlo simulations, based on their Excel models, anywhere a web browser is available – on PCs and Macs, tablets and e-book readers, and even smartphones. The compute-intensive simulations are performed by backend servers on Windows Azure, maintained by Frontline Systems – but for users, results such as charts, statistics, and new scenarios in Excel simply appear in their browser.
Risk Solver App actually shares its back-end servers with Solver App – which Frontline Systems released over a year ago – and recently-released Premium Solver App. All three apps provide a user interface with dialogs and charts, while relying on Frontline’s backend Solver Server for the compute-intensive work. Solver Server, a Web Service extension of Frontline’s Solver SDK Platform, run’s Frontline proprietary, high performance PSI Interpreter to analyze Excel models, perform simulations, and solve optimization problems.
Free for Anyone with Size Limits, for Risk Solver Pro Users without Limits
The free Risk Solver App imposes size limits on the number of simulation inputs (uncertain variables), simulation outputs, and Monte Carlo trials in a single run. But users of Frontline’s Risk Solver Pro and Risk Solver Platform products for desktop Excel, who have current Annual Support, can use Risk Solver App to run much larger simulations, without the size limits. Frontline’s Azure-based servers can readily handle models with up to thousands of simulation inputs and outputs, and hundreds of thousands of Monte Carlo trials.
Works with Microsoft Power BI for Large Datasets and Database Refreshes
Risk Solver App and Premium Solver App both leverage the fact that Microsoft Excel and Excel Online are much more than just spreadsheets – they include Power Pivot, a multi-dimensional database engine based on Microsoft SQL Server Analysis Services, and maintain a “spreadsheet data model” that can consist of 100 million rows or more of data. Simulation and optimization models usually work with summarized data – and Pivot Tables on the worksheet, sourced from the “spreadsheet data model” are ideal for that.
Using Office 365 with Microsoft’s Power BI extension, users can easily upload their Power Pivot-based Excel workbooks to the cloud, share their spreadsheet-based reports, and even refresh their data from both cloud-based and on-premise databases. With Risk Solver App and Premium Solver App, users can re-run a Monte Carlo simulation or re-optimize their model in the cloud, to evaluate the latest operating data, and make new decisions.
Works with On-Premise SharePoint 2013 Servers
Like other Apps for Office, Risk Solver App works in desktop Excel 2013 and the Excel Web App included in SharePoint 2013, as well as Office 365 Excel Online. Companies who aren’t yet comfortable with cloud-based solutions can get the same results with an on-premise solution.
Frontline Systems Inc. (www.solver.com) is the leader in spreadsheet-based analytics software, helping managers gain insights and make better decisions for an uncertain future. Its products integrate forecasting and data mining for “predictive analytics,” Monte Carlo simulation and risk analysis, and conventional and stochastic optimization for “prescriptive analytics.” Frontline developed the solvers/optimizers in Microsoft Excel, Lotus 1-2-3 and Quattro Pro, distributed to more than 1 billion spreadsheet users. Founded in 1987, Frontline is based in Incline Village, Nevada (775-831-0300).