FICO Xpress Optimization Suite Races Ahead of Competitors in Benchmark Speed Tests

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MINNEAPOLIS — May 18, 2011 — FICO (NYSE:FICO), the leading provider of analytics and decision management technology, today announced that the latest version of the FICO™ Xpress Optimization Suite has beaten the other leading optimization software packages on established benchmark tests. FICO Xpress Optimization Suite 7.2, released this month, achieved record-breaking speeds on benchmarks that test how fast optimization solvers can execute different types of problems.

Optimization tools are used to find the best solutions to massively complex problems, involving thousands or millions of variables and billions of feasible solutions. Advances in optimization software generally correspond to dramatic improvements in operational efficiency and effectiveness. The latest benchmarking tests show the tremendous speed advances made by FICO’s latest release.

In standard tests performed by industry expert Hans Mittelmann of Arizona State University, the FICO Xpress Optimization Suite 7.2 ranked fastest on three of four critical benchmarks: large linear programming problems, difficult mixed integer programming problems and standard linear programming. On mixed integer quadratic programming problems, it ran neck-and-neck for first place with another system. On all four benchmarks, it outperformed IBM’s ILOG CPLEX. Results are shared at

Similar results were reported in a separate benchmarking set created by leading research institutions and optimization vendors. These tests on the most important mixed integer programming solvers also show FICO Xpress 7.2 leading on performance. The results will be published this month in the paper MIPLIB 2010 - Mixed Integer Program Library version 5, Mathematical Programming C.

FICO clients have also been testing the new version of FICO Xpress Optimization Suite, with spectacular results. “In our benchmarks, the latest version was 40% faster than the version we use in production today,” said Rusty Burlingame, manager of Optimization Solutions for Southwest Airlines. “These are incredible results. We expect a significant speed boost in our crew scheduling applications by using FICO Xpress 7.2.”

“Solver speed is the critical factor for judging optimization solutions, and clearly we are ahead of the pack,” said Oliver Bastert, product manager for FICO Xpress Optimization Suite. “In addition to faster performance, FICO Xpress Optimization Suite gives users unique capabilities for large-scale optimization. We provide the most powerful modeling language, Xpress-Mosel, which rises above all other modeling languages by offering efficient data manipulation, full programming features, and built-in distributed computing capabilities. Xpress-Mosel users can prototype new optimization applications within days and productize them within weeks, which offers a significant competitive advantage when compared to legacy modeling languages."

Organizations with large-scale operations, from global banks to professional sports leagues, use the FICO™ Xpress Optimization Suite to ensure that they are making the most efficient and profitable use of resources such as capital, human resources, and technology assets. Financial institutions in particular benefit from the use of FICO Xpress for pricing, portfolio management, trading, and other critical applications.

FICO has also just released the latest version of the FICO™ Decision Optimizer, a business analyst tool that accelerates the creation of optimized decision strategies. FICO Decision Optimizer 6.2, which has FICO Xpress embedded, now enables business strategy designers to utilize more specialized optimization routines in strategy development, to address a wider range of problems.

“With the latest version of FICO Decision Optimizer, the most advanced clients can change the underling optimization model in order to solve very specific problems,” said Andrew Flint, product manager for FICO’s optimization products. “This can be useful in areas like pharmaceutical marketing or mortgage modification, where you need to customize the algorithm to formulate the problem more efficiently and find a better solution across geographic regions.

“FICO Decision Optimizer is the only solution that combines the speed and scalability of the Xpress optimization engine with a structured approach that guides you through the optimization steps,” Flint added. “And now it gives operations research and analytic teams the flexibility to write their own optimization formulations and apply them within a very structured environment for building decision strategies.”

For more information on FICO’s performance on the benchmarks, email

About FICO
FICO (NYSE:FICO) delivers superior predictive analytics solutions that drive smarter decisions. The company’s groundbreaking use of mathematics to predict consumer behavior has transformed entire industries and revolutionized the way risk is managed and products are marketed. FICO’s innovative solutions include the FICO® Score — the standard measure of consumer credit risk in the United States — along with industry-leading solutions for managing credit accounts, identifying and minimizing the impact of fraud, and customizing consumer offers with pinpoint accuracy. Most of the world’s top banks, as well as leading insurers, retailers, pharmaceutical companies and government agencies, rely on FICO solutions to accelerate growth, control risk, boost profits and meet regulatory and competitive demands. FICO also helps millions of individuals manage their personal credit health through Learn more at FICO: Make every decision count ™.

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