SAS continues to innovate, delivering AI capabilities on its modern, in-memory platform

SAS Viya® enhancements extend the SAS Platform to deliver new capabilities for analytics-driven organisations

Analytics leader SAS is helping customers gain more value from data with SAS Viya products, extending the value from the SAS Platform. These newest advances, such as embedded artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities, will further address the needs of organisations that are making analytics core to their business. A variety of industries, countries and organisation sizes have embraced SAS Viya products. Some recent adopters include:

  • Belfius Bank and Insurance in Belgium
  • F. Hoffmann La Roche, Swiss multinational healthcare company
  • FOD Financial in Belgium
  • INRA – the National Institute of Agronomic Research in France
  • Lloyds Bank in the UK
  • NVM, Dutch organisation of real estate agents and appraisers
  • SciSports, Dutch sports analytics firm
  • TruDecision, U.S. fintech firm

With SAS, data scientists, analysts, developers, IT, domain experts and executives can all generate data-driven insights – from the same, consistent data, fostering greater collaboration and driving innovations faster. SAS continues to deliver new capabilities, such as image recognition, deep learning and natural language understanding into the SAS Platform.

SciSports develops AI to find the next great football star

With football (that's soccer in the U.S) contracts being signed at upwards of 50 million US dollars, it is important that agents and clubs understand as much about a player as possible. SciSports, based in the Netherlands, advises and builds solutions to determine the influence of individual players on team results, track player development, determine potential market value for a player, and predict game results. Through the SAS and SciSports development partnership, the companies intend to use SAS Viya products capabilities and SciSport's BallJames camera system with the goal of using object detection to access player movements through 3D images. With cameras capturing footage in real-time, SAS AI capabilities can model player movements and that data can then be used to identify rising stars or undervalued players, by benchmarking their performance against others in a given league. To achieve this variety of analysis and insights the SciSports research requires significant data, deep learning and human expertise.

"SAS has the potential to give us four key things we need," said Wouter Roosenburg, Chief Technology Officer at SciSports. "The ability to scale our processing power up or down as needed; the option to put models into production in real-time using SAS Event Stream Processing; the ease of development and discovery in one platform; and the flexibility to call Python or other open source software."

TruDecision brings efficiencies to auto dealers and lenders

Consumers are increasingly moving away from brick and mortar toward digital, disrupting conventional business models. Fintech firm TruDecision sees this shift as a chance to bring valuable efficiencies to auto dealers and lenders through cutting edge analytic technology. Dealers spend a tremendous amount of money sourcing customers, many of whom do not qualify for financing. Lenders process those customer applications and incur significant expense while only closing on a small fraction of them. Using SAS Viya products, the company is now able to revolutionise the customer acquisition process by performing powerful credit analytics on consumers in real- time before the lender or dealer even sees them, driving down costs by as much as forty per cent for both groups.

"SAS provides the cloud-based horsepower we need to deliver our proprietary data and modeling solutions," said Daniel Parry, Chief Executive Officer of TruDecision. "At present, our industry focuses on the technology required to source and route customer information, with almost no insight into the customers themselves. Backed by SAS, we can insert ourselves directly into that data flow, rapidly developing and deploying artificial intelligence, machine learning, and neural network models to maximise the effectiveness of our customer's business process."

TruDecision deployed SAS Viya products through their U.S. subsidiary, Integrated TruDecision, using SaasNow's self-service portal for cloud deployment. Dutch company SaasNow offers SAS Viya products in the cloud, making it possible for companies to get started quickly at a low cost with highly scalable services.

NVM makes it easier for members to visualise their data

NVM is a Dutch organisation of real estate agents and appraisers. Having launched SAS Visual Analytics to their users in 2014, the organisation wants to expand the ways they can present insights to member real estate brokers.

"We have 4000 users and they don't have research backgrounds," said Marco Uitendaal, Project Manager at NVM. "The API layers included with SAS Viya allow us to develop past just presenting data in a SAS Visual Analytics dashboard. Now we will be able to help users integrate the prepared data into their existing day-to-day software dashboards, and still with a consistent look and feel across NVM users.

NVM also chose to host their system with SaasNow to maximise the return on the IT investment without infrastructure or staffing constraints.

The SAS Platform encompasses the entire analytics life cycle

The SAS Platform, which includes SAS Viya products, helps users quickly create value from data by seamlessly transitioning through the stages of the analytics lifecycle – from data to discovery to deployment. SAS is the sole leader in The Forrester Wave™: Enterprise Insight Platform Suites, Q4 2016. The Forrester report states:

"SAS offers a balance between strength of current offering and a platform strategy. SAS has best-in-class analytics coupled with a breadth of good data management for streaming, virtualisation and master data management. It has made progress simplifying its tools, and its recently launched SAS Viya offers promises to go even further in modifying and simplifying its architecture."

New enhancements to the SAS Platform for the remainder of 2017 include:

  • Embedded AI capabilities in the SAS Platform, starting with SAS Visual Data Mining and Machine Learning and SAS Visual Text Analytics. Building on a long history of machine learning, these SAS products provide deep learning and natural language understanding to enhance the depth of insights derived from data.
  • Single interactive interface that spans a wide range of analytics tasks and disciplines to help non-coders solve complex problems faster.
  • SAS Data Preparation for self-service, visual data wrangling, transforming, blending and cleansing data, with application-generated code fit for IT scheduling environments.
  • SAS Visual Text Analytics, a modern, flexible and end-to-end text analytics framework that combines text mining, contextual extraction, categorisation, sentiment analysis, and search. It automates feature extraction and business-rule generation using modern machine learning approaches.
  • SAS Visual Analytics for self-service discovery and analytics adds new ways to visualise data relationships, taps into the power of location analytics, and brings a refined user experience.
  • Cloud deployment through the SAS Cloud, Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure and others, including SaasNow.

Peter Pugh-Jones, Head of Technology at SAS UK & Ireland, said: "When it comes to our products and services, SAS is always innovating to help our customers unlock new value. The AI revolution has truly arrived as businesses throughout the world utilise the technology to improve accuracy, boost efficiency and productivity and create new services. Through embracing AI, SAS Viya will continue to provide our customers with the analytics and insight they need to thrive and grow."

Analytics Experience Amsterdam

Today's announcement was made at the Analytics Experience conference in Amsterdam, a business technology conference presented by SAS that brings together thousands of attendees on-site and online to share ideas on critical business issues.

About SAS

SAS is the leader in analytics. Through innovative software and services, SAS empowers and inspires customers around the world to transform data into intelligence. SAS gives you THE POWER TO KNOW®.

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