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Congratulations to Yves Sagaert

14 November 2017

Yves Sagaert successfully defended his PhD thesis entitled “Tactical Sales Forecasting with External Leading Indicators”.

He was partly supervised by Nikos Kourentzes of Centre of Marketing Analytics and Forecasting, El-Houssaine Aghezzaf from Ghent University, Belgium, and Bram Desmet from Solventure, Belgium.

Traditional forecasting models take into account univariate information extrapolating from the past, but cannot anticipate macroeconomic events, such as steep increases or declines in national economic activity. In practice this is countered by using managerial expert judgement, which is well known to suffer from various biases, is expensive and not scalable. Yves in his PhD, evaluated multiple approaches to improve tactical sales forecasting using macroeconomic leading indicators. The outcome was a statistical forecast that was able to select automatically both the type of leading indicators, as well as the order of the lead for each of the selected indicators. This resulted in gains in forecast accuracy, but also in business insights.

His examiners were Professor Gert De Cooman, Professor Veronique Limère, Professor Hendrik Van Landeghem, Professor Stijn De Vuyst, Professor Joris Walraevens all from Ghent University and Professor Robert Fildes from Lancaster University.

During his PhD he published two papers:

The Centre for Marketing Analytics and Forecasting wishes Yves good luck to his future research!