A native of Genoa, Italy, Andrea Traverso, CEO of Orenburg USA, initially focused on engineering ­ specifically the construction of steel and concrete buildings. After receiving his MBA, he began working as an intern at a management consulting company in Milan where he specialized in planning control and logistics. One of the partners of the consulting firm, Francesco Rosi, was an experienced pioneer in using technology to solve management problems. Says Traverso, "The problem at that time - approximately 15 years ago - was that there was a very clear separation between technical people and businesspeople. It was extremely difficult to find individuals with both competencies. As a result, most of the work of the consulting company resulted in a very nice book of suggestions for changes in a company's structure and processes. Unfortunately, most of the time, these suggestions ended up in a drawer and were never put into practice. When I started working with Francesco, the idea was to put the technical side and the management side together." Rosi directed Traverso to research companies in Italy that had already adopted decision support systems - at the time, either an EIS (executive information system) or DSS (decision support system). A second aspect of the research involved reviewing the current products available. Thus began the process that eventually led to the development of Orenburg and its sole product, Board Management Intelligence Toolkit (M.I.T.).

"After 30 years, the promises of decision support still are mainly unfulfilled. It's rare to find a chief financial officer who can quickly and easily determine the impact of changes in customer payment terms on the company's net cash flow or how changes in raw material costs affect customer profitability," states Traverso. "While BI [business intelligence] vendors mainly focus on making information available and accessible, the complexity of the current business environment and new management approaches require the ability to answer complex what-if questions to effectively budget and forecast, and to support processes that span across different departments and outside a company's boundaries."

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