Forecasting at speed and scale for NielsenIQ


Forecasting at speed and scale for NielsenIQ Delivering results in a changing market

The big picture There is more information available to us than ever before, and whilst we can use data to tell a story about what has happened, organizations that want to differentiate themselves from the competition will take those stories and turn them into a plan for the future. As society evolves and changes around us, so does the need for the way we understand consumer behavior. In an evolving landscape, businesses that are equipped with a sophisticated forecasting platform can adapt to change, and deliver for markets on demand. We need to build flexible solutions equipped to handle new and varied challenges, and we need a platform that can not only tell us what has gone before, but give us the insight to tell us what is still to come.

Most businesses track performance, but how do you take the available data, look forward and plan for a personal best?


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On the starting blocks with NielsenIQ NielsenIQ was looking for a solution that would enable higher category forecasting accuracy, provide ongoing reporting to track performance, and enable strategic planning across their platforms. NielsenIQ specializes in global measurement and data analytics, and is the definitive source for retail and consumer intelligence. As an industry leader, NielsenIQ is always striving for an extra edge to drive their business forward, stay ahead of the competition, and continue to be the trusted adviser to the world’s leading consumer goods companies and retailers in an ever-changing business landscape. Fractal’s experience in engineering bespoke solutions through our integrated cross-market AI-based suite of algorithms meant we were the ideal partner to stand alongside NielsenIQ, and help them approach their decision making with confidence that they could pass on to their own clients. The challenge


© 2022 Fractal Analytics Inc. All rights reserved

A transformative solution Fractal’s Foresient, an AI forecasting and planning platform on AWS, generates forecasting models and forecasts at speed with high accuracies. Armed with this solution, we began by looking at historical reporting which allowed us to learn more about NielsenIQ’s categorisations, and the way that NielsenIQ works with its clients to provide the data they need to make actionable business decisions. Alongside this, we took into account other sets of associated data that could also affect how consumers reach their purchase decision, including short, medium, and long-term impacts that can cause market disruption, for example;

Our automatic data pre-processing and feature selection can be significantly more accurate than simple or manual forecasting, giving NielsenIQ the confidence to forecast for any eventuality.



World events;

Even the weather!


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Fractal’s Foresient, an AI forecasting and planning platform on AWS, generates forecasting models and forecasts at speed with high accuracies. We approached the challenge by: 1. Understanding the problem statement and the current state through discovery sessions. 2. Carried out data preparation via sanity checks like missing data completion and data harmonization. 3. Created multiple iterations to arrive at the forecast using AIML forecasting engine. What we provided A transformative solution


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How we did it: The winning formula A transformative solution

Amazon Web Services EC2 provided scalable compute capacity for hosting the front end, back end, and APIs of the application. EMR based on Spark was used to process and analyze huge volumes of data. Amazon Relational Database Service provided a cost-effective database, and S3 stored information in the form of forecasts and models.

The ‘Slam Dunk’ of managed services are ones that can run end to end forecasting operations as well as help businesses focus on ROI.


© 2022 Fractal Analytics Inc. All rights reserved

The results

The immediate impact

The long-term outlook NielsenIQ could access visual forecasts on the Foresient user interface, use the integrated API, or download the data via CSV to work alongside their current workflows and business applications. Comparing forecasts with actual values at different hierarchy levels across time ensured that bias and accuracy metrics were taken into account as part of the overall analysis.

Foresient generated forecasts for five categories across the United Kingdom and three categories across Ireland, which delivered actionable insights.

Forecasting accuracy ranged between 91.2% and 97.4%.

The options available showcase the range of ways Foresient can complement current ways of working to provide the extra insight required to stand out.


© 2022 Fractal Analytics Inc. All rights reserved

Enable better decisions with Fractal Fractal is one of the most prominent players in the Artificial Intelligence space. Fractal’s mission is to power every human decision in the enterprise and bring AI, engineering, and design to help the world’s most admired Fortune 500 ® companies. Fractal product companies include, Crux Intelligence,, & Fractal has more than 2,300 employees across 16 global locations, including United States, UK, Ukraine, India, and Australia. Fractal has consistently been rated as India’s best company to work for, by The Great Place to Work ® Institute, a ‘Leader’ by Forrester Research in its Wave™ on Specialized Insights Services, Computer Vision & Customer Analytics and as an “Honorable Vendor” in 2021 Magic Quadrant™ for data & analytics by Gartner.

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