Transform·action: a passion for building

I'm Andrew Howe, an actuary with 20+ years' commercial experience. I set up Transformaction to deliver pricing and product development, modelling, analytics and risk management services. I bring smart ideas, drive and a hands-on approach. If you face strategic, competitive or technical challenges – or just lack resource – contact me.

Here are the services I offer.

Price optimisation and product development

He has the rare quality of being an "idea guy" that is also capable (and willing) to roll up his sleeves to help implement the idea so the result is successful. Client Manager and Vice President, global reinsurer

With a passion for building, I design, model and price products, typically in highly price-sensitive markets.

  • Risk premium pricing: using multi-factor models, rather than one-way analyses
  • Market pricing: advanced estimation of customer or agent demand curves and price elasticity
  • Competitor response mitigation: using techniques such as “submarine” and “hit and run” pricing

The optimisation goes beyond price, to include distribution, marketing, underwriting and other elements of business acquisition and, post sale, managing customer and distributor retention.

Pricing and product development example:

  • Taking a company with an expense overrun of 200% of revenue
  • Delivering 70+ products in 18 months
  • Making it profitable in under 2 years

Mergers & Acquisitions – recent work:

  • Due-diligence: data room-related work and management meetings
  • Actuarial review: mainly focused on MCEV/TEV reports and models
  • Expense synergies: people, systems, buildings in the context of limited data
  • New business: appropriate modelling and calibration
  • Corporate model: building the acquirer’s model for valuation and pricing
  • Pricing and offer letter: internal communication, tactics and precise wording
  • Negotiations and SPA: particularly the pricing mechanism and seller indemnities

Analytics: BI, predictive analytics and machine learning

Andrew is very much a "can do" actuary. His initial work way back in 2004 was a major factor in launching our data analytics programme. This was key to the start of Legal & General's focus on business retention and improving business quality. Commercial Manager (Distribution Quality & Retention) at Legal & General

Robust business intelligence. This is the collection, interrogation of and learning from large quantities of data, to gain insight and improve business decision making. Building and leading teams, or working alone, I have:

  • Taken 400,000 pdfs and produced an actionable database
  • Built an expert underwriting system based on rules, text and the Google API
  • Harvested structured content from tens of thousands of web pages
  • Delivered systems from Excel/VBA/Powerpivot/SQL – up to billions of records

Turbo-charged with predictive analytics and machine learning. I apply machine learning techniques to commercial estimation and predictive analytics challenges, such as pricing and customer retention. I also tackle less well defined "unsupervised learning" problems, for example the Enron corpus, with its 500K+ emails. I use Python and Jupyter, but I'm happy to work with other tools, such as R. Contact me with your ideas.

Predictive example – minimal maths, no algorithms

The challenge was to predict a book and chapter, based on a phrase extracted from the works of more than 30 authors. My solution presented results in 1 second, with the following features:

  • Probabilistic estimates for each book and each chapter
  • Responsive to changing inputs in real time, highlighting relevant text
  • Mode 1: Classic BI, with "memorisation" of all data
  • Mode 2: Machine learning methodology i.e. training and validation data

Risk: smarter than 3 lines of defence

You have shone a light on risk management. Head of Compliance, insurer

Too often risk management is identified only with regulatory work. This work is necessary and should be done well, but optimised capital is just the starting point; uncertain outcomes affect day-to-day and expected profits.

My 3 lines of attack covers loss reduction, uncertainty management and performance optimisation and is:

  • Grounded in your core business objectives and activities
  • Focused on increasing the market value of your firm – and demonstrably so
  • Sound, based on modelling and optimisation techniques, including machine learning

I cover "soft" risk areas too: risk frameworks, intelligent controls and smart risk registers. I supply spreadsheet, database and web-based software. If your risk management is slow and distant, contact me.

Andrew easily ensured the day-to-day aspects of the risk management framework operated smoothly. Chief Actuary and Finance Director

Contact me

  • Email: a n d r e w (at) our domain or
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